Why Hold a Worldwide Celebration of Wood?

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The short answer to this question: wood is an eco-friendly renewable material that touches the lives, cultures and environments of people around the world in ways that give it a value worth celebrating and protecting.

World Wood Day celebration 2022

Trees all over the world play an important part in people's lives and the environment. (Photos courtesy of Doug Loyer, Woodcraft Photography and Catalog Manager)

Every year on March 21 the International Wood Culture Society (IWCS) and the World Wood Day Foundation (WWDF) sponsor World Wood Day, a cultural event that features activities to raise awareness about the key role wood plays in a sustainable world.

Launched in 2011, the first international event was held in 2013 in Tanzania, followed by China, Turkey, Nepal, USA, Cambodia, and Austria. Activities available at this annual cultural gathering included woodcarving, woodturning, furniture building, folk art, wood design, children’s project, tree planting, scientific symposium and collaborative project. Regional events were also organized. In 2020, the pandemic caused the event scheduled for Japan to be cancelled. In 2021 the event was held virtually, as it will be in 2022.

The 2022 theme, “Trees for Good,” focuses on managing forest trees well to provide sustainable forest resources.

According the World Wood Day website, trees in the world’s forests are vitally important for responding to climate change and halting global warming, because of their ability to absorb and convert atmospheric carbon dioxide to produce wood of trees while releasing oxygen during photosynthesis.

To learn more about this World Wood Day, including a video showing activities over the past 10 years, visit worldwoodday.org.

Primary programs this year are the scientific Symposium, the World Expo 2020 Tour, Collaborative Project, and Wood Education.


The 2022 World Wood Day Online Symposium and The Fourth IUFRO Forest Products Culture Colloquium are scheduled for March 21 and 22, with experts from many countries sharing about topics related to trees and wood.

According to Dr. John Parrotta from the USDA Forest Service and president of the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), this event provides an opportunity for the scientific community to share with the public the latest science education initiatives related to the World Wood Day motto: Wood Is Good. Speakers are from universities and forestry and environmental institutes around the world.

For links and a schedule, visit this site.

Topics include:

  1. Historical Utilization and Cultural Values of Trees and Non-Wood Forest Products
  2. Challenges and Opportunities for Trees and Non-Wood Forest Products
  3. Construction and Buildings Including Wood Durability and Protection Needs
  4. Building Components, Furniture, Musical Instruments, Artifacts and Design
  5. Education on Forest Sustainability, Forest Products Utilization and Culture
  6. Wood Products and Wood Biotechnology (IAWS Special Session)

Trees are also an important part of leisure time activities worldwide, providing an attractive backdrop for a host of activities such as boat rides, fishing, hiking, skiing, camping and national park visits.

Virtual Tour of World Expo 2020

The International Wood Culture Society virtual Tour of World Expo 2020 in Dubai, part of the United Arab Emirates, is available in videos on the website and Facebook. The Expo opened in October 2021 and will end March 31, 2022. It features 192 countries from around the world, each with its own pavilion to showcase the country’s culture and heritage. IWCS representatives interviewed directors or commissioner generals of each pavilion who help viewers understand the cultural significance of displays, many of them made from wood.

Watch videos at worldwoodday.org or on Facebook.

These videos are worth watching, because they not only illustrate the significant connection of wood to many diverse cultures but also the cultures themselves. You will see beautiful wood pieces and examples of amazing creativity that range from the historic to the modern.

Collaborative Project

Because of the pandemic, the 2022 Collaborative Project will again be virtual. Participants from around the world will participate, and the finished project will be revealed on March 21. Prior to 2020,  a diverse selection of makers, artists and craftspeople came together from around the world to build a sculptural installation – a celebration of art, community, and their shared language of wood. In 2021 the project was completed virtually.

Wood Education

The World Wood Day Foundation and International Wood Culture Society worked with the Rocky Mountain Research Station, to present a series of videos about Fire in the West that explores the issues surrounding wildfires in the western US. View the videos here.

Keeping Trees a Priority

The future of trees will determine how much and what wood will be available for future generations, which will directly impact people in the US and around the world. That makes events like World Wood Day and Arbor Day important, because they keep us focused on issues that affect our forests.


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