Urban Forest Research Group (UFoRG)

The Urban Forest Research Group (UFoRG) delivers scientific knowledge on the UK’s urban forests (all the trees in and around the urban realm – in public and private spaces, along linear routes and waterways, and in amenity areas). Our work includes quantification and assessment of urban forests across the UK, quantifying the role of urban forests and green infrastructure in delivering ecosystem service benefits to society and valuing these services. Our research also considers the socio-ecological and urban resilience of urban forests to climate change. The “What is the Urban Forest Research Group?” document gives a more complete overiew of the group's work.

The Centre for Excellence for Land Regeneration to Woodland is housed within the Group: producing and disseminating science and expertise required to deliver sustainable woodland and wider green-infrastructure from degraded land.

UFoRG is based at Alice Holt in Surrey (England).

Dr Kieron Doick - Head, Urban Forest Research Group

Kieron DoickKieron’s research centres on the benefits that urban trees provide to society – the so-called ecosystem services of trees and greenspaces. He explores both the quantification of ecosystem service delivery and their valuation, through the use of tools including i-Tree Eco and Treezilla.

Kieron has an Environmental Science background and a PhD in Environmental Chemistry with microbiology. His previous work includes research on the process and impacts of regenerating previously used land to greenspace – especially community woodland, and the fate of persistent organic contaminants in soil.

Phillip Handley - GIS Specialist

Phillip HandleyPhillip is interested in using GIS tools and models to investigate the resilience of urban trees and greenspace and Ecosystem Services they provide. Phillip joined Forest Research in 2006 as a GIS and Spatial Ecology Analyst using GIS to evaluate biodiversity in a fragmented landscape, and he transferred to UFoRG in 2014.

Dr Madalena Vaz Monteiro - Urban Forest Scientist

Madalena Vaz MonteiroMadalena is involved in a number of programmes which focus on the knowledge and valuation of ecosystem services provision by urban greenspaces and forests. These include the understanding of temperature regulation by urban trees and greenspaces and the assessment of changes in the allometric relationships and growth rates of different urban tree species and of trees located in different cities. She has a PhD in plant sciences, which investigated the impact of leaf and plant structure and function on temperature regulation and surface energy balance.

Kathryn Hand - Urban Forest Scientist

Kate hand staff profileKathryn joined Forest Research’s Urban Forestry Research Group (UFoRG) in November 2016. She previously worked in biological recording with local environmental recording centres, has experience with Natural England working on woodland surveys, and earlier worked with seabird conservation in New Zealand. Kathryn completed her MSc on urban ecology in 2014 at the University of Otago, New Zealand, which followed on from a BSc in Biology at the University of St Andrews, Scotland. 

Post-graduate students

The Urban Forest Research Group works in collaboration with a range of institutions to develop post-graduate studentships, including PhDs, EngDs and MSc students.

Thomas Chung

Thomas’ research seeks to understand the radiative performance of urban trees, specifically asking the question "Does leaf reflectance up to 2.5 µm vary with sample locus and cardinal direction?".

Helen Davies

Helen is researching "Who will invest in ecosystem-based adaptation in British cities?", looking specifically at payments for the climate regulating ecosystem services provided by urban trees and woodlands.

Martin Lampert

Martin is studying Organic amendments in land regeneration: benefits to trees, soil fauna and long-term carbon sequestration. He started in January 2017 and is due to complete in Dec 2019. Martin is based at the University of Central Lancashire.


What's of interest

UFoRG's work complements that of the Urban Forestry and Woodland Advisory Committee’s Network, who launched their "Our Vision for a Resilient Urban Forest" in Spring 2016. Introducing England's urban forests follows on from the Vision document defining what an urban forest is and seeking to understand England’s urban forest; their structure and composition. Written by members of UFoRG and FR’s Social and Economic Research Group it looks at what tools are available to help measure this kind of information - such as the National Forest Inventory, iTree and Treezilla - and describes what needs to be done next and how you can get involved.

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