The Applied Environmental Research Foundation (AERF) is a registered Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) based in Pune, India. Since its inception in 1994, AERF has been working towards biodiversity conservation on the ground.
The Foundation applies the principles of ‘community based conservation’ and develops natural resource management models that actively involve local communities in the cause of forest protection to make conservation beneficial and to create a win-win situation for all the stakeholders. AERF projects are implemented in the North Western Ghats that form a part of a global biodiversity hotspot in India. Team AERF also works across the country for research, training, capacity building and networking for conservation.
AERF’s mission is to establish a strong link between research and its effective use in the process of development, for poverty alleviation, sustainable resource use and participatory conservation.
The path to accomplish this mission goes through our work at grassroots levels for conservation of valuable habitats and biodiversity, through establishing meaningful partnerships, networking initiatives, participation and sharing benefits with communities. Our programs are designed to strike a balance between environment & development.
AERF aims to maintain a balance between conservation of biodiversity, forests, ecosystems and use of natural resources for the development of people. AERF is engaged in creating a link between research in the field of conservation and its actual use in action for conservation on the ground.

AERF’s Objectives
  • To develop and implement feasible and locally effective models of sustainable natural resource management.
  • To study and preserve indigenous knowledge and practices linked to environmental protection, natural resource management and agriculture.
  • To design and undertake conservation awareness programmes for different target groups including children and women.
  • To mainstream biodiversity issues in cross-cutting areas and to promote dialogue with diverse stakeholder groups on biodiversity concerns through capacity building.