Table 3.

Summary of gap analysis generated from applying the practical ideal type to the profession of urban forestry.

Ideal type categorySummary of gap analysis
1. Essential Service to SocietyUrban forestry lacks societal recognition that urban forest professionals provide an essential service.
2. Body of Knowledge (BoK)Urban forestry lacks a codified BoK that is stewarded by practitioners and serves as the foundation of the profession moving forward, including an alignment of degree accreditation, credentialing, and continuing education.
3. Higher EducationUrban forestry lacks alignment of university curricula with the needs of the profession and society. There is also a lack of formal relationships among professional organizations, practitioners, employers, and higher education.
4. CredentialingUrban forestry lacks a dedicated credential for urban foresters that can establish a minimum level of competency, enforce ethical standards, or foster professional unity.
5. Public TrustUrban forestry lacks a coordinated nationwide effort to increase awareness of the profession as well as an urban forestry credential to build public awareness and trust.
6. RecruitmentUrban forestry lacks formal recruitment pipelines into degree programs and into the profession.
7. Retention and AdvancementUrban forestry lacks consistent job titles and standardized qualifications needed to monitor employment trends and identify opportunities for professional development and advancement.
8. Professional OrganizationUrban forestry lacks a member-created professional organization dedicated to serving and promoting the profession.