Master of Science in Forest Science


Programme Description

Course description

Forest Science offers two different curricula.

Forest and Land Management forms specialists in sustainable management, conservation and integrated valorisation of forests and natural resources and is characterized by an interdisciplinary approach to forestry. Subjects taught include applied ecology and functioning of natural ecosystems, management of wildlife and insects, biotic and abiotic disturbances and related mitigation tools, applied forestry and forest operations, forest pathology, bio-economy and resource valorization, hydrology, fluviomorphology, integrated management of erosion in steep slopes of mountainous areas. Students acquire awareness and understanding of the organisation of forest and mountain ecosystems and skills for sustainable management of forests and rural landscape, especially in an Alpine and Mediterranean environment.

The curriculum Forest and Nature for the Future forms specialists in governance of forests and natural ecosystems in the context of international issues such as climate change, deforestation, land use change and biodiversity conservation. Subjects taught include dynamics of natural ecosystems and climate change, natural habitat management, forestry, forest planning and operations in fragile environments, production, evaluation and enhancement of ecosystem services also through participatory approaches, international forestry policy, conflict management, corporate social responsibility, forest certification. Students acquire capacity to interpret complex socio-ecological systems and to identify innovative solutions for responsible forest management in line with the major global environmental issues.

Course structure

  • Forest policy for a bio-economy strategy
  • Forest ecology and management
  • Natural disturbances ecology and management
  • Insect ecology and management
  • Wildlife conservation and management
  • Forest pathology and wood alterations
  • Geology of Mountain Areas
  • Forest transportation
  • Forest hydrology and erosion control
  • Mountain River Morphology and Restoration
  • Stand history and dynamics
  • Applied Silviculture and Forest Management
  • Reduced Impact Timber Harvesting
  • Global change and forest ecosystems
  • Natura 2000 management
  • Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Forest
  • Integrated watershed management
  • Forest policy, governance & conflicts: from global to local
  • Environmental resource valuation
  • Market-based instruments for Ecosystem Services
  • Social responsibility and certification
  • Introduction to GIS
  • Joint Field Module
  • Communication skills
  • Research planning

Career opportunities

A Forest Science graduate can be employed in public and private institutions, agencies, Governmental and Non-Governmental Organisations working as planner, designer, manager and supervisor in the field of sustainable and responsible management of forests, natural and semi-natural habitats, land management and protection, landscape management, use and valorisation of forest resources and ecosystems services nationally or internationally. In addition, Forest Science high profile education facilitates access to basic or applied research or to doctoral programmes in Italy or abroad.

Entry requirements

The programme is addressed to Bachelor graduates with either forestry, agriculture, biological or environmental backgrounds. Forest Sciences trains high-profile graduates with a holistic and innovative vision, prepared to work on the management and conservation of natural resources at a national, European or international scales.

Applicants are expected to hold a degree (BSc or equivalent) which ensures adequate knowledge of agricultural and forest sciences, with essential competencies in ecological, forestry, economic and technical areas for the management of natural resources, production processes and land conservation. Other kinds of educational curricula will be examined based on the documentation provided.

Language requirements

English language at a B2 level as per the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) - o corresponding level (e.g. Academic IELTS or TOEFL/IBT) is required. If the candidate is an English mother tongue speaker or has attended upper secondary school or a degree course in English, no language certification is necessary.

Last updated February 2019

About the School

The University of Padova is one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious seats of learning; it is a multi-disciplinary university that aims to provide its students with both professional training and a ... Read More

The University of Padova is one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious seats of learning; it is a multi-disciplinary university that aims to provide its students with both professional training and a solid cultural background. A qualification from the University of Padova is a symbol of having achieved an ambitious objective, one that is recognised and coveted by both students and employers alike. Read Less