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Spotlight series: M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF)

This week we turn our attention to M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF), in India, for our Spotlight series. The series profiles research organisations based in developing countries.

MSSRF logo


M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) began with the proceeds of the first World Food Prize that Professor M S Swaminathan was awarded in 1987. The Foundation was formally registered in 1988 with the vision of harnessing science for sustainable development.

The work that MSSRF does is focused on linking science and society. It uses an integrated approach blending traditional knowledge systems with advanced technologies for achieving sustainable development. It emphasises food, agriculture and nutrition security at individual, household and community levels and promotes environmental sustainability and social and gender equity in all its development programmes. Leveraging scientific research and innovation, working closely with communities and facilitating mutual learning among technical experts and communities are key values in MSSRF’s work. MSSRF activities also facilitate the formation of grass root level organisations to ensure sustainability of activities beyond the intervention period.

MSSRF photo

Throughout 2014 MSSRF, has worked particularly to promote family farming. Through 2015, the International Year of Soil, it will focus on promoting sustainable and environment-friendly farming methods, helping to meet the zero hunger challenge and achieving the objectives of the SDGs. It also plans to advocate for the declaration of an International Year of Underutilised Crops by the UN, in partnership with relevant organisations.

With increasing pressure on food production driven by diminishing availability of land for agriculture, climate change, urban migration and a growing population, MSSRF research is examining the appropriate use of technology, biofortification, conserving biodiversity and agricultural innovations such as sea farming as part of the Foundation’s drive towards achieving nutrition security.

MSSRF works across South Asia to influence a variety of stakeholders – the rural and agricultural community, policy makers, scientific research organizations, the UN and other policy-making bodies for development.

Research spotlight

If you want to get to know M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF)’s research better visit their organisation profile. A selection of their publications is listed below. Please note that some of this research is published by Leveraging Agriculture for Nutrition in South Asia (LANSA).

Recommended readings

Village information centres: harnessing local knowledge via interactive media
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2003
This document presents recommendations for policy makers in India and at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) drawn from a workshop that took place on 8-9 October, 2003 in Chennai, India. The workshop brought together ov...
Measures of impact of science and technology in India: agriculture and rural development
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2008
The revolutions in agriculture, health and education witnessed during the last century were mostly the products of public research supported by governments and philanthropic institutions. Recently, however, there has been a shift away...
Home gardens and fishponds for nourishment and empowerment
S. Abubaker; G. Gopi; C.S. Mishra / MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2014
This story of change is about the impact of the Alleviation of Poverty and Malnutrition project led by the Swaminathan Research Foundation. The project aims to enhance food and nutrition security, and the income of marginal, small and...
Integrated agriculture enhances farm productivity and livelihoods in agro-biodiversity hotspots
E.O King; S.A. Siddick; G. Gopi; N. Kav / MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2014
India is home to incredible diversity in plant and animal species and is ranked among the richest areas of biodiversity in the world. Unfortunately, much of this diversity is being eroded at an alarming rate, largely due to habitat de...
Reflections of women farmers: Programme for the empowerment of women farmers, Vidarbha (Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana)
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2014
Vidarbha, the hot spot of agrarian crisis, has an unenviable record of suicides by farmers in recent decades. The crisis has accentuated the vulnerability of women farmers in general, and the widows of the farmers who have committed s...
Technological opportunities for distress mitigation in most seriously affected areas of Wardha district
M. Manjula / MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2010
Wardha district (20° 18' to 21° 21' N. and 78° 4' to 79° 15' E) lies in the Vidarbha region of Maharashtra. The district has a predominantly agrarian economy with 65 per cent of the main workers being engaged in agricu...
An exploratory study on large-scale feeding programmes and the possibility of linkage with small and marginal farmers
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2013
India is the seventh largest country geographically, second most populated and the twelfth largest economy in the world. The economy of India is diverse, with a number of major sectors including manufacturing industries, agriculture, ...
Many lives of women farmers: empowering women farmers in Vidarbha
p. Kulkarni / MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2010
Globally and nationally, the role of women in agriculture - including crop and animal husbandry, fisheries and forestry - is growing. In spite of the pivotal role played by women in natural resources conservation, cultivation, consump...
Report on the state of food insecurity in urban India
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2010
A review of the global context in respect of food security shows that the slow growth rate of food production has led to a decline in per capita output of grain between the 1970s and the first decade of the twenty-first century, due i...
Transformative Impact of ICT - Change stories from rural India
2012
This publication contains 12 case studies, which illustrate the transformational role of ICT in villages. I hope the men and women who have mastered the technologies and are applying them in day today life will serve as role models fo...
Operationalizing the concept of farming system for nutrition through the promotion of nutrition-sensitive agriculture
S. Nagarajan; R.V. Bhavani; M.S. Swaminathan / Current Science, 2014
Despite impressive gains in agricultural production and greater availability of food many people in India suffer from undernutrition. Improvements in agricultural production that lead to greater access to nutritious food could help co...
The school feeding programme in India
MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, 2011
Across the world, school feeding programmes (SFP) have been seen both as a social safety net for vulnerable sections of the population and as an educational intervention aimed at ensuring that children go to school and that their lear...