Our customers: consulting on forest plans

When developing a forest plan, it's essential to consult timber interests, woodland users, the wider public and other stakeholders about the issues and proposals at hand. Public sector organisations like the Forestry Commission use Delib tools to run their forest plan consultations online:

Forestry Commission

People: hearing from diverse stakeholders

The UK's Forestry Commission are Britain’s largest land manager, looking after nearly a million hectares of land. They use Citizen Space to consult on all their forthcoming forest plans – dozens of exercises each year. They also used Dialogue to open up public conversations about local forests. This enabled different stakeholder groups to engage with each other, giving Forestry Commission valuable qualitative data and building understanding about the diverse needs of woodland users.

"Dialogue has played an essential role in our decision making, everything from how we manage visitor facilities at local sites to organisational restructuring."

Digital Communications, Forestry Commission

Government of Northern Ireland

Environment: managing ash disease

The Government of Northern Ireland uses Citizen Space to run and manage online consultation across its departments. This includes the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), who use the platform to consult on forest planning – for example, inviting people's views on proposed changes to the management of Ash Dieback. As well as allowing them to easily open up a digital survey, Citizen Space provided a single, simple place to feedback to participants about the concerns raised and the Department's responses.

"Consultations give people in all walks of life a chance to get involved in the work of government. It is an important part of the policy-making process. Citizen Space is the Northern Ireland Civil Service preferred surveying tool, which allows the public to respond to consultations online."

Government of Northern Ireland

Scottish Government

Economy: future forest strategy

The Scottish forestry sector is a major contributor to the country's economy – reportedly close to £1bn gross value added annually. So it was a significant decision when the Scottish Government were considering their approach to new arrangements for the governance, development and regulation of forestry. They wanted to gather views on the proposal, so used Citizen Space to run an online survey. They received hundreds of responses, which contributed to a comprehensive report and helped inform the Scotland's future forest policy.

"Digital technology is so powerful in bringing people together that it has set the agenda for citizen participation in many ways. I would like to see us harness these tools more, and bring policymaking closer to the citizen."

Digital Engagement Manager, The Scottish Government

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