Info Management U of Waterloo 120-702

Description: Forest inventory and management are experiencing continued rapid paradigm changes, both in Ontario and nationally.  These changes result from dramatic improvements in digital technologies, as well as from increasing pressures from environmental groups, the general public, First Nations, governments, and customers.  Forest industries are obliged to satisfy a growing, complex, and at times convoluted, spider’s web of rules, standards, business practices, and public expectations.  In addition, R&D projects, using limited public and private resources, are often challenged by a lack of standardized approaches to forest inventory, management and database design.  Government, industry, and R&D partners in Ontario lack a comprehensive and integrated method of managing forestry data to meet the challenges described above.  Related to this is the need to address issues such as education of forestry specialists and upgrading of workers skills through extension programs.  Current technology solutions have not kept pace with the rapid changes, and are proving costly and inefficient. 

In this project, the current situation will be analyzed and a hybrid solution will be developed using common hardware, standard foundational software (a backbone), and an identified suite of standardized database technologies.  The objectives of this project are:

  1. To develop a standardized Forestry Data Model, designed to guide spatial database development, management, analysis and research in Ontario.
  2. To develop a sample GIS forestry database and pilot projects that will illustrate the design of the data model, provide a database for testing GIS analysis tools, and support the development of a training program.
  3. To develop a set of downloadable GIS-based tools for the development, management and analysis of spatially referenced forestry data.
  4. To commercialize the GIS tools, in association with the development of a set of online analysis and training modules, for forestry sector markets within and beyond Ontario.

These activities will support efficient management and implementation of GIS and data management technologies in the forestry sector in Ontario.  They will enhance Ontario’s forest inventory and management systems, and provide a test bed and implementation platform to support current and future R&D, and skills training through extension programs.  The results of the project will become the de facto standard for Forestry Research Partnership R&D projects involving algorithms, data models and module development.  This project will provide a world-class platform and environment to support full integration of public sector, private sector, academic, and NGO forest R&D activities.


The Project Team: Peter Deadman, University of Waterloo, Kevin Lim, Lim Geomatics Inc., Al Stinson, MNR-FRP



Pitt, D. and J. Pineau. 2009. Forest inventory research at the Canadian Wood Fibre Centre: Notes from a research coordination workshop, June 3–4, 2009, Pointe Claire, QC. For. Chron. 85: 859-869.



AFRIT Poster 2009


Status Reports:

Annual Report (2007-2008)

Project Work Report (2007-2008)

Status Report (2008-2009)

Financial Summary (2008-2009)


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