Photo of Prakash Nepal

Prakash Nepal

Research Economist
One Gifford Pinchot Drive
Madison, WI 53726-2366
Phone: 608-231-9380
Fax: 608-231-9508

Current Research

  • Evaluating current trends and future outlooks of global and national forest products consumption, production, and trade
  • Modeling and analyzing impacts on forest resources and forest product markets of economic and demographic changes, structural changes, technology changes, and policy changes
  • Investigating economic viability of new technologies that utilize wood for new or improved wood products
  • Evaluating carbon mitigation benefits of forests and harvested wood products

Research Interests

  • Modeling national and global forest product markets and trade
  • Understanding forest resources and forest product markets impacts of changes in economies, technologies, and policies affecting forest sector
  • Understanding economic viabilities of new wood-based technologies
  • Understanding economics and carbon benefits of forest-based climate change mitigation efforts
  • Understanding carbon benefits and forest product markets impacts of increased mass-timber use in construction sector

Past Research

  • Projection of national and global forest sector carbon sequestration
  • Evaluation of net changes in carbon emissions resulting from increased wood energy use 
  • Evaluation of market competition for wood biomass between energy and traditional products
  • Evaluation of carbon mitigation, benefits, costs, and forest product markets impacts of climate change mitigation through timber set-asides
  • Projection of global planted forest area and its impacts on forest products market and trade
  • Evaluation of financial viability of managing forest stands for carbon sequestration

Why This Research is Important

  • This research is important to identify economically viable policy, technology, and forest management opportunities that contribute to sustainable forestry in the United States
  • The research will contribute to better understanding of the role of forests and harvested wood products in climate change mitigation
  • Research findings will help forest manager, policy makers, and forest industry in anticipating and adapting to change and to aid in strategic planning of forest resources and forest products industry
  • The results of the economic assessment of new technologies will contribute to new information and knowledge on economic viability of new technologies for converting wood and fiber into new or improved wood and paper products


Ph.D. in Forest Resources (Focus-Forest Economics), 2011
Mississippi State University, Mississippi State
M.S. in Tropical Forest Management, 2006
Dresden University of Technology, Dresden, Germany
M.S. in Natural Resources Management, 2004
International Institute of Geo-information Sciences and Earth Observation, Enschede, The Netherlands
B.S. in Forestry, Wildlife, Soil and Water Conservation, 1999
Institute of Forestry, Tribhuvan University, Nepal

Professional Experience

Research Assistant Professor, Dept. of Forestry and Env. Resources, North Carolina State University
Postdoctoral research scholar, Dept. of Forestry & Env. Resources, North Carolina State University
Postdoctoral research associate, LSUAgCenter, Louisiana State University

Professional Organizations

  • International Society of Forest Resource Economics (ISFRE, formally SOFEW), Member (2007—Current)
  • Society of American Foresters (SAF), Member (2007—2014)

Featured Publications and Products


Research Highlights

Global and Regional Forest Area Projections Using an Updated Environmental Kuznets Curve Model (2020)
FPL-2020-99 Forest resources are critical to environmental, economic, and social development. Therefore, understanding how global forest area will evolve in the future is important. This study used an updated Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) model to project total forest area through the year 2100 in 168 countries, using variables including income, rural population density, and the size of the labor force under different world visions of economic and demographic changes represented under the Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs).

Global and Regional Outlooks for Planted Forest Area Based Quadratic Relationships with Per Capita Income (2020)
FPL-2020-98 This study provides insight into the prospective planted forest area futures through the year 2100 in various countries, aggregated into major regions and the world, using the estimated quadratic relationships between per capita income and planted forest area, and compared with the past published projections based on a linear relationship.

Understanding the Effects of Increased Use of Wood Energy on Timber and Wood Product Markets (2019)
SRS-2019-46 The development of new markets for wood products has potentially important impacts on the American public and taxpayers: competition with existing industries could increase or decrease outputs and potentially increase income to forest landowners, making forests more profitable and thus retained as forestland. This study helps better understand such impacts on wood products markets and the use and management of forest resources.?