ICFRE needs to rethink its strategy and re-align its focus to the changing requirements

Usha Gairola, Dehradun: Forest Research Institute (FRI) organized the 29th Research Advisory Group meeting on 18th September, 2023. The main aim behind conducting the meeting was to discuss and assess the new research project proposals and change requests for the ongoing projects. The meeting commenced with the inaugural address delivered by Dr. Renu Singh, Director, ICFRE-FRI and Chairperson of RAG.
She welcomed all the Research advisory group members, officers of the State Forest Department, HODs, scientists of the ICFRE-FRI and other ICFRE institutes. She emphasized on the significance of research in meeting the demands of industries, SHGs, communities and, growers.
Over the years forestry research requirements are changing, Dr. Renu Singh highlighted the fact that ICFRE needs to rethink its strategy and re-align its focus to the changing requirements. She further added that the issues of environment degradation which have close association with the forestry need to be included in its planning. She showed her concern about thepollution in rivers, lakes, water bodies, wetlands, mangroves which have direct bearing on the wild animals, humans, livelihood, health and indicated that the carrying capacity of forest needs to be included in research plan of ICFRE. The
Director also highlighted the importance of Research Advisory Group which meets annually to evaluate various project proposals and also approves the suitable projects for funding by ICFRE. Environmental degradation is in the main focus and has superseded the core issue of forestry.
Dr. N.K. Upreti, GCR,ICFRE-FRI presented the agenda of the RAG meeting. He briefed theRAG members on the four thrust areas under which research activities of the institute are being undertaken.He mentioned about the projects conducted in the mandated states.
He also gave an insighton the progress of the ongoing projects and also the ones that were completed this year in ICFRE-FRI.
The Principal Investigators (PI) presented their respective project proposals from the dias. A thorough discussion was held and the PIs were cross-questioned on the feasibility of their projects.The ongoing project which required extension to complete their objectives were also deliberated. The project proposals that were found to be scientifically suitable were recommended by RAG members for funding by ICFRE.
The RAG meeting was attended by Dr. Sukh Dev Singh, IFS, Former APCCF Uttarakhand, Sushant Sharma APCCF/GM UP Forest Corporation Western Zone Meerut, Satnam Sing CF Punjab, Dr. Arvind Bijalwan, Dean College of Forestry, Ranichauri, Dinesh Goyal, Managing Director, Rama Shyama Papers Pvt. Ltd, Bareilly, Dr. P. S. Rawat, ADG, (RP), ICFRE, Dr. I.D. Bhatt, G.B. Pant National Institute of Himalayan Environment, Almora, Dr. Rajesh Kaushal, Pr. Scientist (Forestry), ICAR-IISWC, Dehradun, Dr. H.S. Suresh, IISc Bangalore, Dr. Sunil Chandra Dubey, ADG (Plant Protection Biosafety), ICAR, Krishi Bhavan, New Delhi, Dr. Shashi Bhushan Tripathi, Professor, TERI School of Advanced Studies, New Delhi.
The meeting ended with vote of the thanks proposed by Dr. Vikas Rana, Scientist, Research and Coordination Section.

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