Our Mandate

Mandate of the Asian Elephant Specialist Group

Mandate of the Asian Elephant Specialist Group

The Asian Elephant Specialist Group (AsESG) is an integral part of the Species Survival Commission (SSC) of the international Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). The mandate of the AsESG is thereby derived from the four objectives outlined by the SSC which are to:

  1. Assess and monitor biodiversity
  2. Analyse the threats to biodiversity
  3. Facilitate and undertake conservation action
  4. Convene expertise for biodiversity conservation

The AsESG shall accordingly address each of these objectives with regard to Asian elephants by:

  1. Assessing and monitoring the status of wild and captive populations
  2. The AsESG shall provide best available scientifically-grounded evidence as to the abundance, distributions, and demographic status of Asian elephant populations in all 13 range states. It shall periodically compile range-wide assessments which shall be publicly disseminated via the AsESG website and other outlets. It shall also set forth advisory guidelines for range states in performing their own assessments so as to maintain common standards of rigor throughout in order to facilitate range-wide assessments. It will also assist in building capacity within range states to perform necessary assessments. The AsESG shall serve as an information hub and the specialist group website shall be a clearinghouse for data of relevance for the conservation of Asian elephants.

  3. Analysing the threats to wild populations and the interrelationship with captive populations
  4. The AsESG shall analyze threats to wild populations and raise awareness of these by communicating both within and outside the scientific community. The AsESG shall also set forth standards or guidelines for management and welfare of wild and captive elephants, including but not limited to the surveillance of disease interfaces and economic activities that impact elephants.

  5. Providing conservation recommendations and initiate conservation actions involving relevant stakeholders
  6. The AsESG shall use its advisory mandate to guide conservation and welfare issues of Asian elephants by governments, civil society or any other relevant stakeholder. Members of the specialist group will work on their own areas of expertise and in collaboration with those outside the specialist group to outline conservation strategies for Asian elephants.

  7. Convening expertise needed for conserving Asian elephants
  8. The AsESG, being a community of researchers and practitioners, may choose to meet regularly in order to consult one another and conduct its own activities. Subsets of the AsESG may also meet separately as required; such meetings may be facilitated by teleconference if needed. The AsESG may also convene gatherings in the form of conferences or workshops open to external participants with specific aims or themes that it deems necessary and timely for furthering the protection of Asian elephants.


The Asian Elephant Specialist Group (AsESG) is a global network of specialists concerned with the study, monitoring, management, and conservation of Asian elephants (Elephas maximus) in its 13 range states