Logo for Perseus projectPromoting Economic Resilience and Sustainability of the Eastern U.S. Forests

PERSEUS provides the necessary foundation for redefining national forest inventory in the US, while also providing the much-needed ability to project future forest conditions and provided ecosystem services across contrasting scales.

Promoting Economic Resilience and Sustainability of the Eastern U.S. Forests (PERSEUS) will use an integrated transdisciplinary approach to provide scientifically sound information, outreach, and educational opportunities that will lay the foundation for a long-term paradigm shift in forestry toward data-driven, AI-supported forest management systems that increase both the provision of ecosystem services and operational efficiency. The project encompasses the northern hardwood forest in the northeast, the central hardwood region, and the southern pine and mixed hardwood.

Project Goals

image of PERSEUS summary sheet with link to pdf
PERSEUS summary (click on image for downloadable pdf)

Eastern US forests provide critical ecosystem services, but their long-term sustainability is increasingly threatened by climate change, evolving markets, and other associated factors. In response, more refined and immediate information is needed to allow land managers to make informed decisions that will affect the delivery, sustainability, and resilience of forest resources. Data for forest management is still primarily derived from conventional methods, which are infeasible over large areas and require considerable manual effort.  Our data-driven, stakeholder-informed framework will provide a “digital bridge” enabling both multi-objective optimization at the landowner-scale for practical tactics (e.g., species selection) and multi-stakeholder simulation and tradeoff analysis at the regional scale for informed decision and policy-making. Complementing this, our educational programs will generate a diverse workforce capable of carrying these tools into the future. Impact will include enhanced productivity and ecosystem services with a simultaneous decrease in losses due to environmental challenges.

Project Partners

The PERSEUS research team will work cross-institutionally to construct and apply an integrated digital framework for modeling current and future forest ecosystem service trends at the landowner-scale, so that landowners will have data upon which to base their forest management decisions.

Dr. Songlin Fei                                                    Dr. Aaron Weiskittel                                                            Dr. Pete Bettinger
Project Investigator                                             Co-PI                                                                                         Co-PI
Professor & Dean’s Chair of Remote                Professor of Forest Biometrics & Modeling                      Hargreaves Distinguished Professor
Sensing                                                             Director, Center for Research in Sustainable Forests           in Forest Management
Director, Integrated Digital Forestry                                                                             

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