OSU is one of 13 Universities designated as Wood Utilization Research Centers by USDA in a national program authorized and funded by Congress to stimulate innovation and the generation of new knowledge and technologies that are necessary to balance the sustainable use of U.S. forest resources with the need to maintain a vigorous, globally competitive domestic forest products industry. There are three primary national goals for the WUR program:
Enhance the global competitiveness of the American wood products industry and strengthen rural vitality.
Utilize wood to advance energy independence and environmental stewardship.
Enable sustainability through socially and environmentally acceptable production and consumption of wood products.
OSU research supported by the USDA Special Grant focuses on science, technology and business practices that will enhance the domestic and global competitiveness of the US wood products industry, especially in the Western US, and that will ensure more efficient use of available wood resources. A special emphasis is placed on the training of future scientists, researchers and practitioners.
The Oregon State WUR research programs are described on many of the faculty research pages and in our annual progress reports below. Wood Utilization research at OSU annually leverages over $2.50 in other funding for each dollar of the special research grant. WUR research has resulted in millions of dollars in savings for Oregonians and Oregon industry, created new business opportunities and helped to ensure rational science-based policy and regulatory decisions to enhance the benefits of Oregon's forests for all.