Brief History of the Department of Social and Environmental Forestry
The Federal Government of Nigeria and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) provided the required fund for the establishment of the Department of Forestry, University of Ibadan, Nigeria in 1963 while Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations diligently served as the implementing agency. The stated aim of the Department was to provide professional personnel in forestry and allied land management. The plan of operation of the Department was signed by the Federal Government and FAO on the 20th March, 1963 and the Department commenced work on the 4th April, 1963. It started with a small, internationally recruited academic staff that held qualifications in Forestry or closely allied disciplines. In 1966, the Department moved into her permanent building.
As the Forestry Department developed, the philosophy of an integrated approach to the management of renewable natural resources came to be adopted and the Department started to extend its teaching and research into wider areas of natural resources management. At the same time, the need for this approach was recognised at Government level leading to a greatly increased demand for specialists with University qualifications. Satisfaction was recorded on solid foundations laid by the FAO International Staff throughout the two (2) phases of the UNDP/FAO Forestry Project in 1963-1968; and 1968-1972. During the first phase, the training focus was purely along six units, namely: Forest Botany; Mensuration and Remote Sensing; Silviculture; Utilization and Wood Engineering; Forest Economics and Management; and Land Use, Law and Institutions
In the last three years of the first phase, Nigerian counterpart staff were recruited and awarded Fellowships for further training in reputable UK and USA institutions. The Nigerian staff were firmly on ground in 1972 when the UNDP/FAO support ended. However, during the second phase (1968-1972), Wildlife and Ecosystems were identified for primary attention. Equally, international staff were engaged for that purpose while a Nigerian counterpart staff was recruited and enjoyed a training fellowship in the United Kingdom. Shortly after the departure of the international staff in 1972, the Department’s mandate was expanded to include studies in Fisheries Management. With the approval of the SENATE of the University, there was a change of name from FORESTRY to FOREST RESOURCES MANAGEMENT in 1974.
From the outset and in strict adherence to the project mandate, the Department maintained and operated an open door policy on students’ admission. Indeed, in the second set of Final Year students in 1966, one of the five graduates was from Kenya. In the period 1967 to 1980, our annual output ranged between 13 and 42 graduates including nationals of Cameroon, Ethiopia, Fiji, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania and Zambia from time to time.
When the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Management was carved out of the Department of Forest Resources Management in 1981, the francophone neighbours, particularly, Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso developed considerable interest in Forest Resources Management and Wildlife and Fisheries Management training programmes.
On 01 February, 2012, the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries Management was split into two, namely: (i) Department of Aquaculture and Fisheries Management; and (ii) Department of Wildlife and Ecotourism Management.
The SENATE of the University of Ibadan, Nigeria in May, 2010 approved the splitting of Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry into two, namely: (i) Faculty of Agriculture and (ii) Faculty of Renewable Natural Resources. Having identified with paradigm shift in the world, the National Universities Commission (NUC), Abuja, Nigeria on the 13 July, 2016 ratified the decision of the SENATE to split the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry into two. Much more importantly, the Department of Forest Resources Management which FAO served as the Implementing Agency to establish in 1963 is now elevated to the Faculty status. The new Faculty of Renewable Natural Resources has four academic departments, namely:
(1) Department of Social and Environmental Forestry;
(2) Department of Forest Production and Products;
(3) Department of Aquaculture and Fisheries Management; and
(4) Department of Wildlife and Ecotourism Management.
It is noteworthy that between June, 1963 and July, 2017, a total of Twenty One (21) Heads of Department piloted the corporate affairs of the erstwhile Department of Forest Resources Management, University of Ibadan, Nigeria and many Graduates with B.Sc., M.Sc., and Ph.D. Degrees were produced. The training received in Forestry and allied courses has since been enabling our graduates in various organisations to deal with the increasingly environmental problems in our society. Much more importantly, the intellectual accomplishments and mental perspectives of our graduates have been helping them to operate on a more encompassing level even outside their areas of specializations.
The Department of Social and Environmental Forestry was officially inaugurated on the 01 August, 2017 by Professor Abel Idowu OLAYINKA, the Vice-Chancellor, University of Ibadan to commence her statutory functions in Teaching, Research and Community Service.
Department of Social and Environmental Forestry, University of Ibadan, Nigeria The Department of Social and Environmental Forestry has two academic units, namely: (i) Forest Economics and Management; and (ii) Forest Biometrics and Remote Sensing/Geographic Information System
The two academic units in the Department of Social and Environmental Forestry have State-of-Art equipment, tools and Textbooks (Plates 1-8) for teaching and research at both Undergraduate and Postgraduate Levels. The equipment listed below attest to the scientific bearing of our Department:
(i) Sophisticated two computer-monitor ProOne 400, (ii)LG Monitor Flat Screens, (iii) hp CPU, (iv)Colourtrac Smartlf 36 mfp scanner, (v) hp Designjet ePrint T520, (vi) Dell Desktops (Flat screen, (vii) Trimble Juno 3B handheld and four GARMIN eTrex10 GPS and (viii) Electronic Laboratory complemented with internet.
Our students and members of Academic and Non-Teaching Staff do interact at the TREE CLUB PARK complemented with Coca-Cola outfit for relaxation.
Plate1: hp Designjet ePrint T520, Two complete Computer System –Monitor ProOne 400, LG Monitor Flat Screen,
hp CPU, Colourtrac Smartlf 36 mfp scanner
Plate 2: Provision of Dell Desktops (Flat screen) in the Forest Biometric and Remote Sensing/GIS Laboratory for Teaching
and Research at Undergraduate and Postgraduate levels
Plate 3: Trimble Juno 3B handheld and four GARMIN eTrex10, Relaskop Plate 4: Production of Map in GIS Laboratory
Plate 5: Projector and Projector Screen in the Forest Biometrics and GIS/Remote Sensing Laboratory
Plate 6: Electronic Postgraduate Room in the Forest Economics and Management Unit Plate 7: Shelves with Textbooks on various courses in Social and Environmental Forestry
Plate 8: Tree Club Park used for relaxation and informal interactive class for both students and lecturers