Research projects



Acronym : REFOREST

Code : 101060635

Contract Period : 01/07/2022 - 01/07/2026

Project Webpage :

Main Funder : Horizon Europe

ORC Staff Contact : Will Simonson

Cockle Park polar agroforestry

REFOREST – is a 4 year-long Horizon Europe project, bringing together 14 institutions from 10 European countries with extensive expertise in this field. The consortium, which includes ORC, will focus on supporting agroforestry in Europe and removing the barriers preventing its wider use. The project coordinator is the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Sciences of the Czech University of Life Sciences Prague, represented by the Department of Forest Management.

Project Aims:

REFOREST has the fundamental aim to use existing knowledge of temperate agroforestry systems to co-create solutions to key barriers that hinder wider adoption of this land use type by farmers in the EU and associated countries. The strategic objective is to enhance agroforestry and the sustainability of food production by internalising the value of carbon and biodiversity in farming business models. The project will use an open science approach to represent the real-world ecological, economic and social potential and limitations of agroforestry within decision-making, verification, and financial support tools.

ORC's Role:

ORC is leading on the REFOREST knowledge base and knowledge transfer. The aim is to  translate the science-practice partnership into a toolbox empowering farmers and other stakeholders to design agroforestry  systems and take consequent, well-informed management decisions in their local situations.

This involves:

  • Consolidating existing knowledge, tools and resources
  • Focus groups exploring how practitioners access knowledge
  • Living labs to identify knowledge gaps required for effective agroforestry implementation
  • Designing, testing and launching decision-support tools
  • Ongoing data capture for system design optimisation
  • Upscaling agroforestry practice

ORC is coordinating a living lab network across the partner countries as well as establishing a UK living lab in northern England.

We are also involved in researching the potential of harnessing AI for predicting carbon and biodiversity benefits of new agroforestry plantings.


ORC Team involved with this project

Principal Researcher
Janie Caldbeck
Researcher and Content Editor
Principal Researcher, Agroforesty
Senior Agroforestry Researcher
Head of Research
Christian Gossel
Farm Sustainability Researcher
Research and Field Assistant