Accomplish more with ForSys

ForSys solves typical spatial planning problems where treatments are allocated to optimize one or more restoration objectives accounting for multiple hierarchical spatial constraints and treatment thresholds. The speed and simplicity of the model allows for the exploration of hundreds of scenarios to fully explore the tradeoffs inherent in land management decisions, rather than finding one optimal solution.  Results help communicate decisions to stakeholders and identify opportunities to more efficiently leverage resources.

COMPARISON

Why we are different than other tools

Planscape

ORGANIZATION: CNRA, Google.org, SIG, USFS, others
Optimization method: 
ForSys (Greedy heuristic)
+ Uses California Regional Resource Kit data incorporating USFS and other datasets
+ Open source and open science
+ Cloud-hosted geospatial interface
+ Fast (compared to linear programming)
+ Available now

ForSys

ORGANIZATION: USFS
Optimization method: 
Greedy heuristic
+ Upload any data
+ Open source
+ Addresses multiple spatial optimization configurations
+ Multiple code platforms (C++, R)
+ Demonstrated application to support federal land management decisions
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Land Tender

ORGANIZATION: VIBRANT PLANET
Optimization method: 
ForSys (Greedy heuristic)
+ Standardized data set provided to users
+ Cloud-hosted geospatial interface
+ Toolkit to compare scenarios based on treatment area overlap
+ Fast (compared to linear programming)
+ Proprietary software

Marxan.org

ORGANIZATION: Marxan.org
Optimization method: 
Simulated annealing
+ Primary application is conservation planning
+ Aggregates parcels into reserves
+ Freely available C program

Testimonials

John Doe
CEO

ForSys is the result of more than 10 years of research to advance scenario planning and prioritization. The model has been used in five different countries and 27 published case studies at scales ranging from watersheds to the continental US. Application of the model has led to management decisions on the ground

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Martina Corona
CTO

Model has been used in five different countries and 27 published case studies at scales ranging from watersheds to the continental US. Application of the model has led to management decisions on the ground.

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John Doe
CEO

ForSys is the result of more than 10 years of research to advance scenario planning and prioritization. The model has been used in five different countries and 27 published case studies at scales ranging from watersheds to the continental US. Application of the model has led to management decisions on the ground

Go To Case Study
Martina Corona
CTO

Model has been used in five different countries and 27 published case studies at scales ranging from watersheds to the continental US. Application of the model has led to management decisions on the ground.

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Vicky Christiansen
US Forest Service Chief, Retired

The Scenario Investment Planning Platform provided the Forest Service with tools to identify cross-boundary management priorities as part of the shared stewardship initiative. Scenario planning tools are an essential part of building consensus among landowners as a way to expand the restoration footprint to achieve desired outcomes on the ground.

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Jason Kuiken
Forest Supervisor

Landscape management has been the ideal for decades yet was very difficult to conceptualize until now. Through ForSys, we can plan and act at scales that will create resilient ecosystems for myriad species to inhabit, and for communities to remain vibrant.

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John Phipps
US Forest Service Deputy Chief, Retired

The ForSys Model and its accompanying Scenario Investment Planning Platform played a pivotal role in the formulation of the Wildfire Crisis Strategy. It equipped Forest Service leadership with the essential spatial blueprint needed to both initiate the project and secure the requisite funding. Beyond this achievement, ForSys holds vast potential for myriad other applications within the agency, particularly in the realms of strategic planning and policy formulation.

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John Battles
Professor of Forest Ecology

UC Berkeley’s class in Forest Ecosystem Management and Planning featured the application of the ForSys Scenario Planning Model. The primary learning outcome of the class was to have student teams develop Regional Priority Treatment Plans that met the goals set by California’s Wildfire and Forest Resilience Task Force. This real-world planning exercise required students to wrestle with the necessary trade-offs involved in prioritizing treatments across the landscape. With the help of the ForSys development team, the class learned how to implement the latest Windows version of the ForSys module. The ability of the software to optimize treatment goals and project spatially explicit treatment plans enabled student groups to evaluate the efficacy of multiple scenarios. The ensuing debates helped students work through the difficult task of balancing competing goals to produce plans that delivered a mix of ecosystem services that best met local needs. UC Berkeley plans to continue its educational partnership with the ForSys team as part of its efforts to provide the next generation of forest planners with tools able to inform landscape scale treatment plans.

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Laura McCarthy
State Forester

We used the ForSys model in the state of New Mexico to identify the highest priority areas for forest restoration in our state. The visual display of specific opportunities for multi-objective and cross-boundary management made it easy to communicate to stakeholders and policy makers, and the entire analysis was included in the State Forest Action Plan Appendix. We found this analytical approach allowed for a more collaborative process when determining resource priorities and identifying priority landscapes.

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Ana Barros
Wildfire Scientist

We used ForSys to prioritize portions of Potential Control Lines (PCLs) across eastern Washington; typically roads, rivers and ridgelines identified by fire managers as likely locations for fire control. We used ForSys to rank segments of PCLs that have a greater benefit for fire managers, given their proximity to highly valued resources and fire likelihood. This ranking can be used by managers to prioritize on-the-ground assessments outside of the fire season to determine whether fuel treatments are needed and during the fire season as part of incident management planning.

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Fermín Alcasena

The prioritization of fire risk reduction treatments in Mediterranean regions poses a significant challenge for managers and stakeholders. Our studies show how ForSys can be used to analyze colocation opportunities between competing objectives, and results such as fuel treatment maps can be readily translated into management projects. Integrating environmental and operational restrictions with this tool is a straightforward process.

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Michele Salis
Italian National Research Council

ForSys allowed us to take into account spatial treatment priorities, treatment thresholds, and activity constraints, and to identify optimal fuel treatment locations. Our work confirmed the potential of ForSys in informing wildfire prevention and land management strategies and providing useful data and maps to forest and land managers.

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Get FORSYS

Start UsingForSys

ForSys is designed to help managers create spatial prioritization plans that meet predefined goals and targets while considering constraints to achieve them. The model was developed with an emphasis for wide application by non-technical users. ForSys was developed for multiple platforms including windows desktop (ForSysX) and in R (ForSysR). You can find out more about the differences between the two platforms in the Getting Started with ForSys Tutorial. ForSysR can be accessed through the link below; ForSysX can accessed using the form on the right.

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Check our recent tutorials

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Getting started with scenario planning and ForSys

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How to use ForSys

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