Forest and woodland are recognised as important multi-functional resources. Natural forests are characterised by particular types of multi-functionality different to those generated by planted forests. From a socio-economic perspective, it is desirable to unpack and measure the range of values associated with multi-functionality. Natural forests contribute to society and economy in many complex ways. Unless the socio-economic values can be adequately enumerated, and appropriately reflected in policy and regulatory systems, there is a danger that certain types of value (often monetary) over-ride the non-market values and undermine the potential achievement of multifunctionality. The balance of forest functions must be negotiated amongst various stakeholders. In natural forests, the focus is likely to be more on biodiversity conservation than production, but such emphasis need not preclude timber production. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has argued that it is possible to valorise the environment (or green capital) through development of tourist/recreational enterprises through 'the cultivation of rural amenities'. However, delivery of effective management of multi-functional forests requires appropriate institutions, management structures and policies, which balance regulation against the socio-economic dimensions of sustainable development.