Don’t Miss Out: Professor Mark Brown to Open Gottstein Course

Head of the University of Sunshine Coast timber research centre announced as special presenter.

Mon 03 Jun 24


Knowledge and expertise from First Nations people will play a key role in managing Australia’s forests sustainably and for long-term use. This, in turn, could fuel the next generation of wood products—not only in traditional plantation forests but also in the emerging agroforestry area.

That is according to Professor Mark Brown, the head of a new $24m centre for timber research at the University of Sunshine Coast – who earlier this year spoke of the importance of managing and rehabilitating Australia’s tropical and subtropical forests and finding innovative solutions for the forest and wood products industry as key to the centre’s work.

Now, Professor Brown is one of the headline presenters already lined up for the Gottstein Trust’s “Understanding Forest Science” course, which will be held on the Sunshine Coast next month.

Ahead of the programme’s release, Helen Murray Gottstein, course convenor, told Wood Central that Professor Brown would be the first speaker who would set the scene in “the capacity building course” and will be the dinner speaker at the Gottstein Trust course Celebration event on August 1.

This year’s course, running from July 28 until August 2, will be hosted at the Mantra in Mooloolaba, Queensland and builds on the success of last year’s course, held at Coffs Harbour in NSW.

“There’s also lots of variety of places to eat for breakfast and those free evenings when there isn’t a course event planned. It should work very well and make things easy for participants who won’t need a car while there,” Ms Murray said, stressing that “the high standards and success of Gottstein courses is largely due to the speakers it attracts.”

In addition to Professor Brown, attendees will hear from a variety of speakers, including Dr Brad Law, who just published ground-breaking research on koala numbers in NSW, and Rob de-Fegley, the Chair of Sustainable Timber Tasmania, among countless other leadership activities relating to forests.

“World leading forest koala researcher and respected ecologist Dr Brad Law will present the latest findings of his research team’s ground-breaking acoustic koala population monitoring work in NSW forest areas,” Ms Murray said.

“This is extremely important work and the findings give heart to forest users and managers and need to be widely communicated to policy and lawmakers as it objectively demonstrates that koalas and carefully controlled forest harvesting can successfully co-exist.”

NSW-based researchers have confirmed that timber harvesting had no impact on Koala populations. (Photo Credit: Image Courtesy of Adobe Stock Images)
Last month, Wood Central reported that Dr Brad Law’s research confirmed that timber harvesting did not impact Koala populations. (Photo Credit: Image Courtesy of Adobe Stock Images)

Course topics include forest soils and water, biodiversity, native forest management, softwood and hardwood plantation management, farm forestry, indigenous community partnerships, biosecurity, and the carbon equation of forests and wood products from certified sustainably managed forests.

“Two separate field trip days promise to enhance the learnings from the classroom. These are kindly supported by Private Forestry Services Queensland, HQPlantations, and the University of the Sunshine Coast,” Ms Murray said. The group will visit  a set of varied and interesting forest sites located in the Gympie region…within real heartland timber country in south-east Queensland.”

According to Ms Murray, places for the six-day course are still available:

“A lot of the learning occurs in conversation with other participants who come from all over Australia… it’s all wrapped up in this convenient week-long course package and the chance should not be missed.”

“If you want more details, simply head along to our website, where you can register for the course…and if you want more information, why not send the course team an email,” Ms Murray said.


  • Jason Ross

    Jason Ross, publisher, is a 15-year professional in building and construction, connecting with more than 400 specifiers. A Gottstein Fellowship recipient, he is passionate about growing the market for wood-based information. Jason is Wood Central's in-house emcee and is available for corporate host and MC services.


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