US Forest Service Research & Development
Contact Information
  • US Forest Service Research & Development
  • 1400 Independence Ave., SW
  • Washington, D.C. 20250-0003
  • 800-832-1355
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Research Topics

Priority Areas

  • Forest Inventory and Analysis

Greg C. Liknes

Research Physical Scientist
1992 Folwell Ave
St. Paul
United States

Phone: 651-649-5192
Contact Greg C. Liknes

Current Research

I am a Research Physical Scientist in the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) Research Work Unit. The FIA program at the Northern Research Station is responsible for the forest land inventories of 24 states extending from the Great Plains to the northeastern United States. My current research interest is the application of geospatial and remote sensing technologies to improving the precision and efficiency of inventories as well as reducing cost. I am interested in semi-automated approaches to mapping the landscape using high-resolution imagery, particulary in areas with tree cover that do not meet a traditional definition of forest. I also conduct research to determine the best methods for combining climate data with forest inventory information in order to address ecological questions regarding drivers of changes to forests.

Research Interests

In addition to my work with high-resolution imagery and climate data, I am the current science team leader for the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) tree canopy cover product. The Forest Service is a member of the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics Consortium (MRLC) and is responsible for producing the tree canopy dataset for the United States using Landsat imagery with a 5-year update cycle.

Why This Research is Important

The FIA program fills critical forest information needs for a variety of customers in state government, the timber industry, environmental organizations, and many more. As a neutral provider of data, FIA seeks to constantly improve the inventory efficiency and utility in order to maximize the return on taxpayer dollars. Integrating geospatial and remote sensing technologies into inventory processes aids in achieving this objective.


  • University of Minnesota, M.S. Department of Soil, Water, & Climate 1999
  • University of North Dakota, B.S. Department of Atmospheric Science 1996

Professional Organizations

  • American Geophysical Union, Member (2010 - Current)

Featured Publications & Products


Research Highlights


Eastern Redcedar Forests are Expanding in the Central United States

Monitoring of change in our nation’s forest resources is an important aspect of the Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) work in the Forest Ser ...


Forest Inventory and Analysis Data Helps Inform Landscape Drivers of Insect-induced Tamarack Mortality

Tamarack trees have long been associated with Minnesota’s “Great North Woods” and have seen a slow but steady rise in abundance starting i ...


Partnerships Produce High-resolution Land Cover Maps of the Central Plains

High-resolution maps, created by the Forest Inventory and Analysis Program and its research partners, are being used to fill a monitoring role f ...


Last updated on : 05/19/2020