Forests in Women’s Hands

Traunkirchen, Austria | April 12-14th, 2021

FiWH Cancellation – COVID-19 Outbreak

Dear future participants, interested individuals and IFSA Family,

We regret to announce that the International Conference ‘Forests in Women’s Hands’, supposed to happen from May 25th-27th in Traunkirchen, Austria, has been postponed to April 12-14th, 2021 due to the massive outbreak of COVID-19 all over Europe. This joint decision was made by the organizing partners of the conference and the IFSA FiWH Task Force.

We were really looking forward to the conference and working hard to ensure a professional event organization with a rich, interesting and diverse programme for you. Unfortunately, the conference has been postponed. Information on the new date will follow soon.

Read more about IFSA and COVID-19
Weeks until #FIWH

About the Conference

“Forests in Women’s Hands” will take place from May 25th until May 27th 2020 at the Forest Training Centre “WALDCAMPUS Austria” in Traunkirchen, Austria. The event aims to promote international networking and exchange of experience among women in forestry, and to increase the visibility of women and their achievements in the forest sector.

Roughly one third of European small forest holders are women. Women also play an important role in decision-making for family-owned forests. Still, they are underrepresented at educational institutions and in forestry professions. Some of the reasons for the aforementioned underrepresentation and weak visibility of women include poor integration of women, a traditional understanding of gender roles and the lack of role models in the field.

About the Venue

“Forests in Women’s Hands” will take place at WALDCAMPUS Austria in Traunkirchen, Austria. It is a forest training centre run by the Austrian Research Centre for Forests (BFW).

Its main role is to offer initial and further theoretical and practical education for people in the forestry industry and for people interested in forests. Students from agricultural and forestry based schools take part in special course offers that fall within the area of their professional training. As well as forestry educational options (e.g. skilled forest worker courses, master of forestry courses or harvester driving courses), the forestry training centre Traunkirchen offers a wide range of forestry seminars covering all current issues in forest and ecosystem management.

IFSA Engagement

The strong engagement of youth, connected to forestry education, is essential in the process of raising awareness for gender equality in forestry.

As the global forestry sector faces great challenges in terms of gender disparity, it has become increasingly necessary for every stakeholder involved to contribute to achieving gender equality in forestry for every person working for our environment and planet. youth, the definitive stakeholders of the future of forestry, are no exception to this. IFSA as such, additionally to the relentless work focused on forestry education, cultural understanding among students and early career professionals, aims to raise awareness on social matters and reach inclusiveness of any gender or provenience in forestry.

IFSA Program

In order to give a voice to youth and contribute to finding solutions for the challenges surrounding gender in forestry, an IFSA delegation will join the conference and take part in several activities organised by IFSA, specifically to target youth, such as:

  • Webinar Series, leading up to the conference, to engage with professionals in the field and informal education training platforms prior to the event;
  • Pre-event workshop, organised by the IFSA-IUFRO JTF on FE;
  • Communication related activities, including testimonial interviews, social media posting, blog writing, production of an online learning course;
  • Communication and logistical support to the organisers of the event;
  • IFSA booth at the information conference market;
  • Speakers during the Opening Ceremony and “Stakeholder Dialogue” panel discussion.
Interested? Apply for the IFSA delegation here!

Meet the Team

Luisa Gragnaniello

Youth involvement and participation are crucial to reach gender equality. Since IFSA is a globally active reality, we have the chance to raise the topic and create a dialogue among different cultures between students from all over the world.

Barbara Öllerer

Many times, gender imbalance is exclusively seen as a women’s issue. However, it is an issue that affects not only women, but the entire forestry sector and society as a whole.

Damiano Cilio

I didn’t fully realise how gender discrimination affects our field until I started to travel for my studies and got the opportunity to see it with my own eyes: it happens much more often than we think.

Annebel Soer

Like many peers, gender imbalance affected me during my Bachelor studies. IFSA aims to be a safe and inclusive organization, where reaching gender parity and inclusiveness is imperative for unlocking the potential of everyone working with forestry and related sciences.

Visit the official website of the conference
Read testimonials about the conference here