With 36 partners in 16 countries, led by the European Forest Institute and co-coordinated by Wageningen Environmental Research, SUPERB aims to restore thousands of hectares of forest landscape across Europe. To implement this, we will link practical and scientific knowledge to be synergistically transformed into action and create an enabling environment for future-oriented forest restoration, including required adaptation measures (=prestoration) at different scales.

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What we do

SUPERB will build on the vast but scattered practical knowledge and lessons learned from successful and non-successful forest restoration and adaptation activities and synthesise them for action. We will connect with restoration experts, including from LIFE projects and practitioners with decades of experiences with alternative management approaches. This practical knowledge will be underpinned by a compilation of highly relevant scientific knowledge including economic, governance, forest management, and climate change adaptation aspects of restoration.

We have 12 large-scale demos in 12 countries, representing various challenges and stressors on European forests and a wide range of necessary restoration actions. Our demo areas comprise entire socio-ecological systems, protecting and restoring forests while also considering people’s needs for ecosystem services and benefits.

Our aim is to implement our restoration activities in partnership with local communities, landowners, and other partners. We will also demonstrate best practices for a variety of forest types and collect practical and scientific knowledge on successful forest restoration.

SUPERB is a €20 million project funded by the EU Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme, with committed in-kind contributions of €90 million from its associated partners.

Our objectives

Our overall goal is to create an enabling environment for, and demonstration of, large-scale restoration of forests and forest landscapes across Europe.

Number 1

Demonstrate and test together with key local stakeholders successful restoration approaches in 12 large-scale demonstrators (‘demos’) across Europe.

Our stakeholders include local communities, private landowners, municipalities, state forests, forest and nature agencies, restoration SMEs, and NGOs. The demos face different challenges and pressures and they aim to restore the structure, composition, and functionality of forest habitats (including soils). This is done with a variety of measures and management forms that integrate restoration as much as possible into ‘normal’ forest and landscape management.

Number 2

Deliver evidence-based practical knowledge on sustainably and successfully managing, governing, and financing restoration by learning about barriers and enablers for restoration.

This is based on past and ongoing forest restoration projects and activities from across Europe and beyond.

Number 3

Improve societal support for restoration and benefits from restoration

By fully considering societal demands and expectations of restoration and co-designing adequate and favourable approaches and plans through inclusive and transformative stakeholder and community engagement.e and beyond.

Number 4

Launch an interactive online Marketplace

Where market agents (landowners, funders etc.) can post calls for or offers of sustainable restoration actions and find insights into sustainable financing that take cost-effectiveness, socio-economic benefits, involvement, and just access into account.

Number 5

Deliver a multi-language Forest Ecosystem Restoration Gateway

That serves as the central knowledge platform for anyone interested or working in restoration to obtain evidence-based guidance on forest restoration, including restoration-support tools, manuals and guidelines.

Number 6

Create a large and powerful multi-stakeholder network and movement for the development, uptake, and upscaling of transformative forest restoration approaches and actions.

We engage with many actors, including our 90 regional to international associate project partners. They represent key stakeholders and have in one way or another influence on the majority of European forest landscapes, e.g., agricultural and nature protection ministries and government agencies from over 20 European countries, landowner associations, certifiers, funders, NGOs etc.

Our sister projects

Restoring biodiversity and ecosystem services

SUPERB is funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Framework Programme under the topic “Restoring biodiversity and ecosystem services” of the call “Building a low-carbon, climate resilient future: Research and innovation in support of the European Green Deal (H2020-LC-GD-2020)“.

We work closely together with our sister projects MERLIN, WaterLANDS and REST-COAST, funded under the same call.