Journeys to a circular bioeconomy are in many ways in the beginning. Forest-based sector research takes a multidisciplinary perspective on the ongoing changes.

Evolving circular bioeconomy markets need forest industries to adapt to the changing operating environment and harness opportunities emerging in traditional and new customer fields.

The shift from low value-added to high value-added products – or from products to solutions incorporating both products and services – indicates a structural change in forest industries. Such shifts, which have taken place in company operations in the past, can be expected to continue in the future. Perhaps paradoxically, it can also take a step back to lower value-added production and seemingly mere material processes.

With a more in-depth look, the solutions developed by forest-based industries for the customers, such as housing construction and textile industry, illustrate the potential for more profound system change; due to increasing digitalization and new service systems in the customer fields, whole industrial production systems evolve.

Data becomes a valuable resource in developing production and use, roles of suppliers and customers change, and operations can be organized in new ways to satisfy several demands, including those of competitiveness and responsible, sustainable business.

Instead of one pathway toward success for forest-based industries, the future unfolds as several possible pathways to explore, which can challenge the route taken so far. Forest-based sector research takes a multidisciplinary perspective on the ongoing changes.

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Reference: Three doctoral dissertations published in the Dissertationes Forestales series in 2023 tackled the forest sector and operating environment changes:

Päivi Luoma. 2023. The role and value of data in advancing environmental sustainability with empirical evidence from tissue and textile businesses, Dissertationes Forestales

Anu Laakkonen. 2023. On the reconfiguring value creation logic and networks of the forest sector in a changing business environment, Dissertationes Forestales

Päivi Pelli. 2023. Service trends and the forest-based sector – an analysis of wood construction, the bioeconomy and evolving product service systems, Dissertationes Forestales