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Articles by Joseph Buongiorno

Category: Research article

article id 1395, category Research article
Joseph Buongiorno. (2015). Income and time dependence of forest product demand elasticities and implications for forecasting. Silva Fennica vol. 49 no. 5 article id 1395. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.1395
Highlights: Elasticities of demand with gross domestic product and prices were stable over time and income level for sawnwood and particleboard only; Other product elasticities differed with income and time, leading in conjunction with a sector model to higher projected world demand and prices than obtained by ignoring differences between countries and over time.

In view of improving multi-country forest sector models, this study investigated to what extent the price and income elasticity of demand for forest products had changed in the past two decades, and how much they depended on the countries income level. For each of seven major product groups annual observations were divided between high-income (top 20% in gross domestic product per capita) and low-income, and between recent (2004–2013) and older (1992–2003) observations. The results indicated that for sawnwood and particleboard the data could be pooled across all countries and years. For the other commodity groups (veneer & plywood, fiberboard, newsprint, printing & writing paper, other paper & paperboard), there were statistically significant differences in gross domestic product or price elasticity between high and low-income levels or old and recent observations. Efficient elasticities were obtained by pooling the maximum number of observations while respecting the statistically significant differences. The resulting GDP elasticities were the same, or very close, across income levels for all products. The price elasticities differed by income level only for newsprint and for veneer and plywood. International forest sector projections to 2065 obtained with these elasticities compared with those based on pooling all data across time and income levels gave less than 3% difference for world consumption of sawnwood, particleboard, fiberboard, and newsprint, but 19% higher consumption for veneer and plywood, 31% for printing and writing paper, and 18% for other paper and paperboard. The world price was 1% to 11% higher for end products and 3% to 22% higher for raw materials and intermediate products.

  • Buongiorno, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology, 1630 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA ORCID ID:E-mail: jbuongio@wisc.edu (email)
article id 913, category Research article
Han Zhang, Joseph Buongiorno. (2012). Markets, government policy, and China's timber supply. Silva Fennica vol. 46 no. 4 article id 913. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.913
China's domestic demand and exports of wood products are rising rapidly compared to domestic supply. The determinants of timber supply in China were investigated with panel data from 25 provinces from 1999 to 2009. The results indicated that China’s timber supply had responded to both market forces, reflected by timber prices largely determined by world demand and supply, and to government policies expressed by production quotas and the tenure reform on collective forestland. The price elasticity of China’s timber supply was estimated at 0.31±0.12. The inelastic response of production to the quota (0.20±0.02) suggested that government had a limited, though significant, control of timber supply. Other things being equal, the land tenure reform increased timber supply by 18±8 percent, where and when it had been implemented.
  • Zhang, Research Center for Resource Economics and Environment Management, Northwest A&F University. No. 3 Taicheng Road, Yangling, Shaanxi, China 712100 ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Buongiorno, Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706, U.S.A. ORCID ID:E-mail: jbuongio@wisc.edu (email)
article id 435, category Research article
Rebecca Ralston, Joseph Buongiorno, Jeremy S. Fried. (2004). Potential yield, return, and tree diversity of managed, uneven-aged Douglas-fir stands. Silva Fennica vol. 38 no. 1 article id 435. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.435
The effects of different management regimes on uneven-aged Douglas-fir stands in the Pacific Northwest of the United States were predicted with a simulation model. Management alternatives were defined by residual stand structure and cutting cycle. The residual stand structure was set by basal area–diameter-q-ratio (BDq) distributions, diameter-limit cuts (assuming concurrent stand improvement), or the current diameter distribution. Cutting cycles of 10 or 20 years were applied for 200 years. The current diameter distribution was defined as the average of the uneven-aged Douglas-fir stands sampled in the most recent Forest Inventory and Analysis conducted in Oregon and Washington. Simulation results were compared in terms of financial returns, timber productivity, species group diversity (hardwoods vs softwoods), size class diversity, and stand structure. Other things being equal, there was little difference between 10- and 20-year cutting cycles. The highest financial returns were obtained with either a 58.4 cm diameter-limit cut, or a BDq distribution with 8.4 m2 of residual basal area, a 71.1 cm maximum diameter, and a q-ratio of 1.2. Using the current stand state as the residual distribution was the best way to obtain high tree size diversity, and high species group diversity. Several uneven-aged regimes gave net present values comparable to that obtained by converting the initial, uneven-aged stand to an even-aged, commercially thinned, plantation.
  • Ralston, Dept of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706, USA ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Buongiorno, Dept of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706, USA ORCID ID:E-mail: jbuongio@facstaff.wisc.edu (email)
  • Fried, USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Forest Experiment Station, Forest Inventory and Analysis Program, P.O. Box 3890, Portland, OR 97208, USA ORCID ID:E-mail:
article id 627, category Research article
Joseph Buongiorno, Audra Kolbe, Mike Vasievich. (2000). Economic and ecological effects of diameter-limit and BDq management regimes: simulation results for northern hardwoods. Silva Fennica vol. 34 no. 3 article id 627. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.627
The long-term financial and ecological effects of diameter-limit regimes and basal-area-diameter-q-ratio (BDq) regimes were compared by simulation in the case of northern hardwood forests. Varying the cutting cycle between 10 and 20 years had little effect on returns or stand structure. A 28-cm diameter-limit cut gave the highest production and financial returns, and the highest species diversity, but considerably lower size diversity. A 38-cm diameter-limit cut and a heavy BDq selection harvest gave high returns, while maintaining high levels of diversity. On lands of equal site quality, Michigan’s stands were more productive than Wisconsin’s. The results suggest that it is possible to manage northern hardwood stands sustainably with diameter-limit cuts, combined with removal of poorly performing understory trees. Adjusting the diameter limit gave rise to stands similar in productivity and structure to those obtained by BDq cutting regimes. Given their simplicity of implementation and monitoring, more attention should be given to diameter-limit cutting regimes, with attendant stand improvement measures, as a practical means for uneven-aged management of northern hardwoods.
  • Buongiorno, Department of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1630 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53705, USA ORCID ID:E-mail: Jbuongio@facstaff.wisc.edu (email)
  • Kolbe, Department of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1630 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53705, USA ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Vasievich, USDA Forest Service, North Central Forest Experiment Station, 1407 S. Harrison Road, Suite 220, East Lansing, MI 48823, USA ORCID ID:E-mail:

Category: Article

article id 5607, category Article
Paola Virgilietti, Joseph Buongiorno. (1997). Modeling forest growth with management data: A matrix approach for the Italian Alps. Silva Fennica vol. 31 no. 1 article id 5607. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.a8508

This paper reports on the possibility and difficulties in building growth models from past Forest Administration records on cut and growth in the Italian Alps. As a case study, a matrix model was calibrated for uneven-aged forests in the Valsugana valley of the Trentino province. The model gave reliable predictions over 30 years, and plausible long-term forest dynamics, including steady-states that are similar to virgin forests. The results support the view that the current forests are deeply altered as to composition, relative to what would obtain from natural growth. They also support the concept of long cyclic changes in natural stands, gradually approaching a climax state. Shortcomings of the data are that they do not come from an experimental design, they are not always accurate, and they must be supplemented with other information, especially concerning mortality. Still, these cheap and available data can lead to workable models adapted to local conditions, with many management applications.

  • Virgilietti, ORCID ID:E-mail:
  • Buongiorno, ORCID ID:E-mail:

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