FRST 319 (3 cr): Principles of Forestry Economics

FRST 319

Course Outline

  • Four assignments
  • Final exam

Course Description

Introduction to the concepts and analytical techniques of forest economics and their application to forest management and policy analysis. microeconomics. Note: This is an online course – use of a computer with internet access is required.

Prerequisite: An undergraduate course in microeconomics

Intended Student

Students registered in the BSF (Forest Management) degree course at the University of British Columbia (this course is a mandatory component of this programme).

Students registered in the B.Sc. (Forestry) and the B.Sc. (Natural Resources Conservation) degree programs at the University of British Columbia who are working towards registration as professional foresters (RPF certification) in the province of British Columbia.

Students in forestry programs at the University of Northern British Columbia and other post-secondary educational institutions in British Columbia.

Those enrolled as Pupils in the Association of Professional Foresters (this course, or its equivalent, is mandatory for registration as a Professional Forester in British Columbia).

Course Objectives

This course is aimed at professional foresters and focuses primarily on the practical applications of economics in the management of forests and forest policy analysis. Although the majority of the examples used reflect the situation in British Columbia, the general principles presented are applicable anywhere that forestry is practiced.

Upon completion of this course you will be able:

  • to appreciate the management of forests as an economic activity;
  • to apply some of the concepts and tools of economic analysis to the management of forest resources; and
  • to analyze and critically appraise important forest policy issues from an economic perspective.

Course Content

The course content is discussed in nine lessons:

  1. Introduction to Economics and Forest Economics
  2. The Economic Importance of Forests to Canada and British Columbia
  3. Wood Recovery Considerations in Logging
  4. The Value of a Cubic Metre of Wood
  5. Can a Value be Assigned to Non-Timber Forest Products?
  6. What is the value of an area of forest land for timber production?
  7. The Financial Analysis of Silvicultural Operations
  8. How should the use of forestland be organised to maximise net benefits to the people of British Columbia?
  9. Property Rights and the Forest Tenure System in British Columbia

Apart from the first two introductory lessons, each lesson deals with an issue of importance to the management of forests in British Columbia. In addressing this issue, a number of important theoretical and and/or analytical concepts are introduced which are then used to critically examine the current situation in British Columbia. The theoretical concepts are, to a great extent, cumulative throughout the course, and participants must ensure that they understand the concepts presented in each lesson before moving on to the next.

Each lesson consists of content available via the Internet (World Wide Web) site for this course, including:

  • Instructional notes and discussion.
  • A list of reference material including useful Internet sites.
  • A list of required readings which might include a chapter from the textbook, short articles, related web sites.
  • Self-administered review questions together with answers to quantitative questions (opportunities to discuss these questions electronically with other students enrolled in the course
    are provided).

Course Work

Students are required to submit four assignments, which will be marked by the instructor and returned with comments. There will be one assignment following the completion of Lessons 1-2, 3-3, 5-6, and 7-8. Each assignment is directed at the lessons completed since the previous assignment was submitted. Although there is no graded assignment covering Lesson 9, the material in this lesson will be tested in the final examination which will examine the whole course.


The final grade you obtain in the course will consist of marks earned in the following:

Graded Assignments (4 @ 10%)
Final examination (60%)

Learning Resources

Klemperer, W. David. 1996. Forest Resource Economics and Finance.  2nd ed., New York: McGraw-Hill.

FRST319 Textbook Order Form

Supplementary Reading
Mentioned in the online course materials are a number of supplementary references that may be accessed through university or college library systems, or from UBC’s Extension Library.

A copy of WINTIPSY, a program prepared by the B.C. Ministry of Forests for the economic analysis of silvicultural operations in British Columbia. This program will be required to complete Assignment 3 and the self-administered review questions following Lesson 7. WINTIPSY can be downloaded at:

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