Skip to Main Content
U.S. Forest Service
Caring for the land and serving people

United States Department of Agriculture

Home > Search > Publication Information

  1. Share via EmailShare on FacebookShare on LinkedInShare on Twitter
    Dislike this pubLike this pub
    Author(s): Ronald E. McRoberts; Erkki O. Tomppo; Erik Naesset
    Date: 2010
    Source: Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research. 25: 368-381.
    Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
    Station: Northern Research Station
    PDF: Download Publication  (140.58 KB)


    National forest inventories (NFIs) have a long history, although their current major features date only to the early years of the twentieth century. Recent issues such as concern over the effects of acid deposition, biodiversity, forest sustainability, increased demand for forest data, international reporting requirements and climate change have led to the expansion of NFIs to include more variables, greater diversity in sampling protocols and a generally more holistic approach. This review focuses on six selected topics: (1) a brief historical review; (2) a summary of common structural features of NFIs; (3) a brief review of international reporting requirements using NFI data with an emphasis on approaches to harmonized estimation; (4) an overview of inventory estimation methods that can be enhanced with remotely sensed data; (5) an overview of nearest neighbors prediction and estimation techniques; and (6) a brief overview of several emerging issues including carbon inventories in developing countries and use of lidar data. Although general inventory principles will remain unchanged, sampling designs, plot configurations and measurement protocols will require modification before they can be applied in countries with tropical forests. Technological advances, particularly in the use of remotely sensed data, including lidar data, have led to greater inventory efficiencies, better maps and accurate estimation for small areas.

    Publication Notes

    • Check the Northern Research Station web site to request a printed copy of this publication.
    • Our on-line publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat.
    • During the capture process some typographical errors may occur.
    • Please contact Sharon Hobrla, if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • We recommend that you also print this page and attach it to the printout of the article, to retain the full citation information.
    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.


    McRoberts, Ronald E.; Tomppo, Erkki O.; Naesset, Erik. 2010. Advances and emerging issues in national forest inventories. Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research. 25: 368-381.


    Google Scholar


    estimation, harmonization, interference, k-nearest neighbor, lidar, remote sensing

    Related Search

    XML: View XML
Show More
Show Fewer
Jump to Top of Page