The Agricultural Ecosystems Research Group (AERG) is a Wisconsin-based consortium of researchers, outreach and policy experts, educators, and practitioners (e.g., farmers) interested in whole-system approaches to pressing environmental challenges of our time.


We conduct research to improve understanding of agricultural ecosystems and to develop and deliver solutions to challenges of high priority within the state of Wisconsin.  We share these findings to encourage public policy and land management decision-making that: support agricultural production of high quality food, feed, fiber and fuel; enhance the natural resource base and the environment; sustain rural livelihoods; and benefit society as a whole.

Background and Description

Originally established in the 1990s, a 2009 Wisconsin Focus On Energy grant has revitalized the AERG. Participants perform field-based and interdisciplinary research and outreach projects focusing on bioenergy and grasslands in Wisconsin. Professional staff members under the supervision of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and University of Wisconsin personnel, coordinate the AERG. Our Executive Committee advises us:

Richard Cates, Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems, University of Wisconsin - Madison
Scott Hull, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources
Randy Jackson, Department of Agronomy, University of Wisconsin - Madison
Laura Paine, Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection
Pam Porter, Biomass Energy Resource Center
Ken Ragland, Emeritus, Department of Engineering, University of Wisconsin - Madison
Alan Turnquist, Program on Agricultural Technology Studies, U. of Wisconsin - Madison
Dan Undersander, Department of Agronomy, University of Wisconsin – Madison

Our coordinator is Carol Williams

Click here for a description of current projects.


Contact Carol Williams