Food forest restoration on Galiano Island, Canada: Assessing food forests embedded in ecological restoration

How can we assess food forests? My interdisciplinary research aims to develop a framework of criteria and indicators (C&I) for assessing the effectiveness of food forests in assisting ecological restoration. To develop this framework I use a food forest case study which offers a local, innovative model of food forestry for conservation organizations yet requires an assessment framework: the Galiano Conservancy Association which will be restoring a degraded land to a food forest in an endangered forest landscape on Galiano Island, Canada.

 My research involved interviews with permaculture and restoration practitioners and an extensive literature review on C&I standards used in agroforestry, agriculture, restoration and forest sustainable management. Based on four principles — ecological integrity, sustainability, historicity and social benefits, my research will identify key C&I among experts in food forests and restoration and ‘road-test’ the practicality of the C&I in the local context of Galiano Island at a focus group workshop.

My research is the one of the first attempts to systemically develop a C&I framework for food forestry. Providing empirical knowledge to scholarly and on-the-ground work in forest restoration and sustainable management, the resulted framework will directly contribute to the GCA’s food forest project.

About

Hyeone Park is doing her MA research on a local food forest project in Canada. She is a PDC graduate as well as Restoration of Natural Systems student. Her ambition is to explore ways to mutually reinforce food forest and restoration practices.

With her multidisciplinary background in art, business and social and natural sciences, she previously worked for a UNDP wetland conservation project and the national Marine Protected Area Centre in South Korea. She is an avid Latin dancer.

 

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