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Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship
Spring 2006 Supplement

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Special Issue on Forest-Related Information


Collections and services supporting forest-related disciplines are often hidden within larger interdisciplinary libraries and information centers. We hope these discussions of issues relating to international forest-related information will highlight the existence of these collections and promote their use in solving problems relating to natural resource use and sustainability.

The papers featured in this special issue were originally presented at two conferences held during 2005. Papers by Sraku-Lartey, Brown and Turnbull, Lee and Zaki, and Kempf were part of a session entitled "Technology and tradition at the desktop: effective use of global forest information resources" held at the XXII IUFRO World Congress in Brisbane, Australia, August 8-13, 2005. This international congress is held every five years by the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), a non-profit, non-governmental organization of forest research scientists ( The session was organized by IUFRO Unit 6.03.00, Information Services and Knowledge Organization (

IUFRO Unit 6.03.00 has four working parties: 6.03.01, Library and information networks; 6.03.02, Trends in forest terminology; 6.03.03, Global Forest Decimal Classification; and 6.03.04, Latin American and Caribbean information systems and networks. Current projects of this unit include development of the International Directory of Forest Information Services as a networking tool, work with specialists in standardizing forest-related terminology, updating the former Forest Decimal Classification system, and supporting information networks in Latin America and the Caribbean. The goals of the unit are to provide networking and resources for international forest information professionals and researchers.

The papers by Avery, Heister, Green, Robbins and Mills are expanded from presentations made at "Frontiers in Forest Information: a centenary conference" held at St. Anne's College, Oxford, December 5-7, 2005 ({}). This conference, organized jointly by IUFRO, CAB International and other bodies, was held in celebration of 100 years of forestry information services at Oxford. The paper by Mills gives a history of that involvement. Work is now proceeding in formulating plans for the future development of the Oxford Forest Information Service, in collaboration with other centres around the world.

As information about forests and trees becomes increasingly important to an ever more diverse range of users, IUFRO Unit 6.03.00 is anxious to support all those involved in supplying it. If these papers are of interest to you, please get in touch - we should be delighted to hear from you, and discuss how the group might assist you.

Carol Green
Roger Mills

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