Bioeconomy and Society
Welcome to the first online open access-course “Bioeconomy and Society”. This course is brought to you by the PerForm consortium, a network of researchers from eight European universities.
This is an introductory course to the forest-based circular-bioeconomy. More specifically, this course discusses the international policies shaping national bioeconomy agendas, the role of stakeholder involvement and public perceptions, and presents some of the most important innovations driving the bioeconomy forward.
The world is faced today with serious challenges: climate change, resource depletion, environmental degradation, population growth and overconsumption. A circular bio-economy, has been proposed as a solution to many of these challenges, promising nations who adopt this strategy a green and prosperous fossil-free future. Forests and the forest-based sector are one of the main drivers behind a sustainable bioeconomy. Besides storing carbon and providing us with clean water and fresh air, wood-based innovations have the potential to replace many of the fossil based products we are so dependent on today.
Yet implementing a forest-based bioeconomy comes with a series of challenges:
• There are disparities in the meaning of the bioeconomy concept between European countries; Likewise, different industrial sectors occupy different importance in each nation’s bioeconomy strategy. Hence, the role of the forest sector in national bioeconomy strategies varies across Europe.
• As a result, there is limited knowledge about whether and how forest stakeholders (across Europe) perceive the forest-based bioeconomy;
• Finally, there is an information gap about whether and how citizens perceive the (forest-based) bioeconomy and if bioeconomy-related innovations may indeed be socially accepted;
In this course we discuss how these challenges can be addressed. Our team of instructors will present the latest insights about bioeconomy from their home countries. In addition to lectures, our course features a series of interviews with experts working at the forefront of bioeconomy developments. The course also includes other learning elements, such as reading materials, open-ended questions, as well as a quizzes at the end of each block so that you can test your newly acquired knowledge.