Restoring tropical landscapes with trees
Ulrik Ilstedt is leading the research group "Trees and Forests for Global Development" at the Department of Forest Ecology and Management. His research is largely focused on using trees to restore different types of degraded land and creating sustainable land management practices that take advantage of the environmental services that trees can provide. Examples of such services include increased water infiltration, enhanced fertility, higher soil organic matter, the presence of soil-stabilizing rooting systems and promotion of biodiversity. Some examples of questions that he works with are:
– What management practices and what tree traits contribute most to ecosystem services?
– Can we use a more diverse set of indigenous tree species rather than a few exotics and is there an added value in doing this?
Currently, Ulrik is working on a project to restore degraded rainforest in Malaysia. In Burkina Faso and Kenya he studies how trees can be used to improve soils and water resources. Ulrik teaches forest ecology, hydrology, and soil science. He is also the coordinator for an advanced level course on site productivity and production ecology and the research school “Forest Ecology and Management in a Changing Environment”.