European Forest Institute appoints new director

EFI deputy director and incoming director Robert Mavsar (Image: Johanna Kokkola)

The European Forest Institute (EFI) has appointed a new director: Dr Robert Mavsar will start his five-year term on 1 January 2024. The decision was made by the EFI Board and the EFI Council gave its assent to the appointment.

Chair of the board Prof Marco Marchetti said: “I am sure that Dr Mavsar will act to consolidate and further develop the institute, improving relations with EFI member organisations and member countries, as well as guaranteeing innovation and global outreach in a European context.”

For the past eight and a half years, Dr Mavsar has worked first as deputy director and most recently as interim director of EFI. During this time, he has been responsible for the development and coordination of EFI’s research activities, and for the operational development and management of the institute.

“EFI is an exceptional network known for its creativity, forward-thinking approach, and adaptability,” said Dr Mavsar. “I believe that together with our members we can accelerate collaborative research and promote science-based knowledge to make a significant impact on the future of forest-related research and innovation.

“By consolidating EFI’s resilience and capacities and building a robust knowledge network in the forest sector and beyond, EFI will be well-positioned to achieve this vision.”

Dr Mavsar has a PhD in economics and two MScs, one in Economics and one in Forestry. His main research interests are in the fields of the development of forest research in Europe, bioeconomy, economic valuation of ecosystem services and innovative business models for the marketing of non-wood forest products.

Dr Mavsar has worked in different roles within EFI since 2007, including as head of the former ‘Forests for Society’ research programme, and acting head and deputy head of the former Mediterranean Regional Office.

In the meantime, Dr Mavsar will continue as interim director until the end of 2023. The EFI Director is based at the institute’s headquarters in Joensuu, Finland.