16)ICRISAT bags Research Leadership Award

The International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) is the recipient of the prestigious Research Leadership Award 2010 presented at the Third Agricultural Leadership Summit held in New Delhi on 29 September.

In meriting the award, ICRISAT was cited as a pioneer of improving dryland agriculture, working with a wide array of partners in the developing countries of Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Among other impacts, ICRISAT and its partners have released more than 600 improved varieties of dryland food crops and hybrids with almost 200 of these being used in India.

Receiving the award on behalf of ICRISAT, Director General William Dar said, “We believe that the world’s farmlands can be the frontline for the battle to feed the one billion hungry people in the world and a projected population of 9.1 billion by 2050. This will mean that global agricultural production will need to grow by 70% by then!” 

Focusing on India, Dr Dar said, “In India, smallholder farmers constitute about 80% of the farming community and hold approximately 39% of total agricultural land, feeding its population of 1.15 billion.”

To further improve Indian agriculture today, Dr Dar emphasized that innovative policies, appropriate institutional arrangements, and market-driven technologies can unlock untapped opportunities to provide benefits to farming communities. 

He said that India could increase agricultural productivity by introducing scientific innovations into the whole agricultural value chain involving production, post-production and procurement.

Along with this, ICRISAT has unveiled its new roadmap to 2020 anchored on an inclusive (broad-based) market-oriented development strategy to help the dryland poor attain prosperity through a new level of resource access, stability, security and productivity, so that they can get out of poverty for good.

Organized by the Agriculture Today Group, the Agriculture Leadership Awards were instituted in 2008 for recognizing excellence and leadership roles played by individuals and organizations towards the development of Indian agriculture and bringing about rural prosperity.

This year, the father of the Green Revolution in India, Dr MS Swaminathan, chaired the organizing committee, and the jury of the national awards committee was headed by Dr AR Kidwai, former Governor of the States of Bihar and Haryana.


by ICRISAT. All rights reserved.