Professor John Herbohn

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Professor John Herbohn


Research areas

  • Restoration of Tropical Forests
  • Forest Dynamics of Tropical Forests
  • Forestry Economics
  • Tropical Mixed Species Plantations
  • Socioeconomic Aspects of Tropical Reforestation
  • Hydrological and Nutrient Impacts of Reforestation
  • Small-scale and Community Forestry
  • Carbon Dynamics in Tropical Forests
  • Climate Change Policy and Forests
  • Multidimensional Reporting Systems
  • Management of Tropical Forests


Professor John Herbohn is the Director of the Tropical Forests and People Research Centre at the University of the Sunshine Coast. John's core research interest in is the field of smallholder and community forestry in tropical countries. The focus of much of his recent research has been on investigating how to improve the success of reforestation by smallholders and communities. His research spans socioeconomic, biophysical and policy disciplines and uses systems thinking as an integrating tool. John is particularly interested in mixed-species reforestation approaches that can form part of the livelihood strategies of smallholders and communities.

Follow John's research through the Tropical Forestry Research Group.

Professional memberships 

  • Certified Practising Accountant
  • Institute of Foresters of Australia


Selected research publications by Professor J. L Herbohn

Gregorio, NO, Herbohn, JL, Harrison, SR, Smith, C (2015). A systems approach to improving the quality of seedlings for reforestation, agroforestry and tree farming in the Philippines. Land Use Policy, 47, pp. 29–41.

Nguyen H, Lamb D, Herbohn J, Firn J (2014) Designing Mixed Species Tree Plantations for the Tropics: Balancing Ecological Attributes of Species with Landholder Preferences in the Philippines. PLoS ONE 9(4): e95267. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0095267

Le, HD, Smith, C and Herbohn, JL (2014). What drives the success of reforestation projects in tropical developing countries? The case of the Philippines. Global Environmental Change, 2, pp. 334–348.

Meadows, J, Emtage, N and Herbohn, J (2014). Engaging Australian Small-Scale Lifestyle Landowners in Natural Resource Management Programs — perceptions, past experiences and policy implications. Land Use Policy, 36, pp. 618–627.

Nguyen H, Firn J, Lamb D and Herbohn J (2014) Wood density: a tool to find complimentary species for the design of mixed species plantations. Forest Ecology and Management, 334, pp. 106–113.

Potential research projects for HDR and Honours students

Field-based projects in Philippines, PNG, North Queensland and Fraser Island in a wide range of areas related to improving the outcomes of reforestation and related to John's areas of expertise. Possible projects include the following:

  • Design of mixed species plantations
  • Forest dynamics of tropical and subtropical forests based on long term plot data from NQ and Fraser Island
  • Socio-economic assessment of reforestation programs
  • Carbon dynamics in tropical forests
  • Climate change policy related to tropical forests
  • Multidimensional reporting systems for the forests
  • Sapflow and water relations in tropical plantations
  • Nutrient cycling dynamics in tropical plantations
  • Impacts of plantations on soil properties

Research grants

Project name Investigators Funding body Year
Systematic map of literature related to mixed-species reforestation in the tropics J.L Herbohn, lead author with J. Firn, D. Lamb, W. Dressler, Engel CIFOR (US$20,000) 2014
Enhancing the implementation of community forestry approaches in Papua New Guinea J.L Herbohn, project leader ACIAR PRoject FST/2011/057 (A$2,088,234)  2013–2017
Improving watershed rehabilitation outcomes in the Philippines using a systems approach J.L Herbohn, project leader ACIAR ASEM/2010/050 2012–2017
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