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Applications open for second Emerging Leader Programme

Following on from the huge success of the first widely-acclaimed Emerging Leader Programme, the Institute of Chartered Foresters (ICF) is delighted to open applications for the second round of this exciting leadership series that aims to develop the skills of both existing and aspiring leaders in our sector.

Developed in partnership with Clore Social Leadership, the programme offers a fantastic opportunity for those who work and volunteer with trees to develop the skills necessary to ensure our trees, forests and woodlands are managed to effectively deliver against multiple objectives, including planting targets, climate change mitigation, the biodiversity crisis and more.

Louise Simpson, Executive Director of the ICF, commented:

“We’re delighted to once again be running our widely acclaimed Emerging Leader Programme. Our future forestry leaders will undertake a comprehensive programme of activities that will ensure they are equipped to deal with the challenges of woodland planting targets, climate change mitigation, the biodiversity crisis and more.

“Similar to the first cohort, this year’s programme will deliver a skilled and strongly interconnected cohort of tree professionals with strong leadership skills to drive the sector forward and navigate future challenges.

“I strongly encourage people from all areas of our sector to apply.”

With a cost of £150, applications for this year’s Emerging Leader Programme are now open. With the first Emerging Leader Programme receiving more than 100 applications from across the sector, competition for places is expected to be strong – early applications are encouraged. The six-month programme is designed to help emerging leaders in the sector build their leadership potential, strengthen their networks and drive both social and organisational change. Successful applicants can look forward to:

  • Six-month programme
  • Multiple methods of course content delivery
  • 20–24 days commitment
  • Self-paced learning
  • Clore Social Leadership Fellowship upon successful completion of the programme
  • ‘Fireside chats’ with leaders from the environmental and third-sectors
  • £1,000 travel and training bursary to cover travel and future development needs identified by the programme
  • One-year Associate membership of the ICF
  • Mentorship from a member of the ICF
  • Free access to the new UKFS online training series (2024)
  • Conference ticket to the ICF’s Centenary Conference April 2025



We hosted a free webinar outlining the key features of the Emerging Leader Programme on 13 June 2024. The session featured a number of contributors, including Louise Simpson, Executive Director of the ICF; Angharad Irvine, Director of Leadership Programmes at Clore Social Leadership; Michelle Hayman, Project Coordinator at the ICF, and successful Emerging Leaders from the first programme.

Watch the webinar



The submission deadline for applications to the Emerging Leader Programme 2024 is 3 July 2024. The programme will begin in the week commencing 9 September 2024.

For further details about the Emerging Leader Programme and how to apply, visit

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