The Team

Leadership

Governing Board

Accelerated Crop Improvement

Enabling Systems Transformation

Resilient Farm and Food Systems

Asia

Eastern & Southern Africa

West & Central Africa

Corporate

Research Leadership Team

Jacqueline Hughes, Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes

Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes is a noted plant health expert. Before assuming charge as Director General at ICRISAT, Dr Hughes was Deputy Director General-Research at IRRI and before that, DDG-R at the World Vegetable Center. Her long association with CGIAR began when she moved from the UK to Ibadan, Nigeria, in the 90s to join IITA as a virologist. With vast experience in leading multidisciplinary teams in Asia and Africa, she is a recognized leader in international agriculture research and management.

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Dr Arvind Kumar

Deputy Director General – Research
Regional Director – Asia

Dr Arvind Kumar is an experienced crop scientist with more than 28 years’ experience in crop improvement, trait discovery to drought tolerance, disease- insect resistance and translational research. As Deputy Director General- Research, he leads and provides strategic direction to ICRISAT research in the area of climate resilience, nutrition, crop improvement, genomics-trait development, crops-water-soil-disease management, policy, agribusiness, market linkages and capacity development for ICRISAT-mandated crops grown mostly in the semi-arid regions of the world.

He has a PhD from Indira Gandhi Agricultural University, Raipur- International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, in plant breeding and post-doctoral training from the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines, on molecular breeding.

Expertise in: Project planning, management and strategy development, molecular breeding for crop improvement, translation research and climate resilience

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Dr Ramadjita Tabo

Regional Director and Country Representative Mali
West & Central Africa

Dr Ramadjita Tabo is a cropping systems agronomist with a PhD in Agronomy and Plant Genetics from the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA in 1985. He is currently the Research Program Director-West and Central Africa and Country Representative, Mali. Prior to his current position he was the Deputy Executive Director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) based in Accra, Ghana (September 2009 to February 2014). Prior to that he was the Assistant Director of ICRISAT-WCA and cropping systems at ICRISAT-Niamey, Niger. Ramadjita worked and was based at various ICRISAT locations including Hyderabad/Patancheru, India; Kano, Nigeria; Bamako, Mali and Niamey, Niger.  He is a member of several  committees amongst which is the Pan-African START (a global Change for Change System for Analysis, Research and Training) Regional Committee (PACOM) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). He won several awards one of which is the prestigious 2007 Nobel Peace prize as a member of the IPCC.  He also chaired the Advisory Board of the IDRC funded AfricaInteract  project (Enabling research-to-policy linkage for adaptation to climate change in Africa). He coordinated the Desert Margins Program (DMP) GEF funded project on arresting land degradation and conserving biodiversity in sub-Saharan Africa and the Challenge Program on Water and Food funded (CPWF) project on enhancing rainwater and nutrient use efficiency in the Volta Basin. His previous research work also included evaluation and promotion of fertilizer microdosing technology and warrantage system, intensification of integrated crop-livestock system. He has published several papers in scientific journals and proceedings.

My expertise: Cropping systems agronomist,  climate risk management, Cropping systems agronomy and physiology, Integrated soil, water and fertility management, Integrated Crop-Livestock systems, systems modelling, Resource Mobilization and Team Management

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Dr Rebbie Harawa

Regional Director and Country Representative Kenya
Eastern & Southern Africa

Dr Rebbie Harawa is an agricultural research and development expert with extensive work experience across Africa. Before joining ICRISAT, she worked for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa as Head of the Soil Fertility and Fertilizer Systems program based in Nairobi, Kenya. Previous positions include Country Team Leader and Science Coordinator for United Nations Development Programme Millennium Villages Project and On-farm Research Specialist for World Agroforestry (ICRAF) in Malawi. Rebbie holds a PhD in Soil Science with minor in Extension from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA and a Master of Science Degree in Agronomy from Bunda College of Agriculture, University of Malawi.

Specialization: Soil Science, Agronomy, Agricultural Extension, Climate Smart Agriculture, Sustainable Food Systems and Program Management.

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Dr Anthony Whitbread

Research Program Director – Resilient Farm and Food Systems

Dr Anthony Whitbread is the Research Program Director – Resilient Farm and Food Systems, based in Hyderabad, India. With a PhD from the University of New England in Soil Science and Agronomy, Dr Whitbread leads a team of 30+ scientists across south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa in an innovation systems mode devising strategies to manage climatic risk, soil fertility and identifying market led development opportunities. This role was preceded by a 20 year research career in the crop-livestock systems of semi-arid Australia, SE Asia and Southern Africa. His team based work has received recognition with the “2006 CSIRO Learning Culture Award” and the 2013 CSIRO team medal for ‘Impact from Science’. In 2011, he became full Professor (W3) of Crop Production Systems in the Tropics at the Georg-August-Universität in Göttingen, Germany combining his passions of teaching and applied research. He has published widely with more than 55 journal articles, a H-index of 21 and citations exceeding 2400.

My specialization: Agronomy and soil science, farm systems analysis, crop modelling, climate risk management, spatial analysis

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Dr Rajeev K Varshney

Research Program Director – Accelerated Crop Improvement

Dr Rajeev Varshney is Research Program Director – Accelerated Crop Improvement, at ICRISAT, based in Hyderabad, India. He has a Ph.D. in Agricultural Botany (Molecular Biology) from CCS University, India. He joined ICRISAT in 2005 and in his dual appointment also served the CGIAR Generation Challenge Program (hosted by CIMMYT, Mexico) as SubProgramme Leader 2, for 6 years. Before joining ICRISAT, Rajeev worked at IPK-Gatersleben, Germany for 5 years. He holds Adjunct/ Honorary position with >10 organizations, and provides leadership to several organizations by serving as member/chair for several committees, editorial boards, funding organizations and advisory boards, etc.

Rajeev is recognized as a leader in genome sequencing, genomics-assisted breeding, translational genomics and capacity building in international agriculture. He has made a pioneering contribution by integrating advanced discoveries in genomics with crop improvement especially in legumes in developing countries. Among different noted contributions, he has genome sequence of 10 crops including pigeonpea, chickpea, groundnut and pearl millet and several molecular breeding products in chickpea and groundnut to his credit. Genomics resources developed by his colleagues and collaborators are being used in several breeding programs with an objective to modernizing crop improvement in developing countries. He has provided strategic leadership, as a Principal Investigator, to Tropical Legumes projects, that have facilitated the release of 266 improved legumes varieties and production of about 498,034 tons of certified seeds with the benefit potential to over 5.0 million ha and over 25 million smallholder farmers in 15 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Areas of expertise: Applied Genomics, Molecular breeding, Crop biotechnology, Genomics-assisted Breeding, Translational genomics & Capacity Building

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Joanna Kane-Potaka

Assistant Director General – External Relations

Joanna is an Australian national and has a Master of Science degree in Global Marketing.

Prior to joining ICRISAT she was Director, Communications and Marketing Information and Knowledge Group, International Water Management Institute, where she was responsible for science marketing, corporate communications, uptake approach of research findings, private industry fund raising, internal communications and information management. She was also Head, Information Management and Marketing, Bioversity International and Information and Communications Leader, WorldFish Center

She began her career as an agricultural economist with the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (BAE at the time) and later moved into market research in the agribusiness area of the Queensland Department of Primary Industries. Since then she has worked in a wide variety of marketing-related areas including strategic marketing, communications, fundraising, knowledge management, and uptake of scientific research.

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Dr Arabinda Kumar Padhee

Director, Country Relations and Business Affairs

Dr Arabinda Kumar Padhee is an Indian national. He has a Master’s degree in Agricultural Science from Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and a PhD from Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi. He also holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration (MPA) from University of Birmingham, UK. He has taken public policy courses at University of Toronto; Civil Services College, Singapore; and University of Cambridge at various points in his career.

Dr Padhee joined the Indian Administrative Services in 1996 and belongs to Odisha cadre. Among the various positions he has held are District Magistrate and Collector; Director, Agriculture and Food Production; Director, World Bank assisted Rural Livelihoods Project; Revenue Divisional Commissioner, Cuttack; Chief Administrator, Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri; Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Tourism and Culture Department, Odisha and Joint Secretary, Department of Fertilizers, Government of India, New Delhi. During his tenure with the Odisha Government, he was instrumental in drafting the Odisha State Agriculture Policy in 2008. He has also served as a member of the Technical Support Group of the erstwhile Planning Commission that prepared the District Agricultural Plan manual. Government of India appointed Dr Padhee as the first nodal officer to implement Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) in fertilizers in 2016.

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Angshu Sengupta

Director – Institutional Finance and Services

Mr. Angshu Sengupta was the Director of Finance, Risk & Legal at IRRI before he joined ICRISAT. In a career spanning 32 years, Mr. Sengupta worked 13 years in manufacturing, 15 in IT enabled services, two years in international consulting and two years in a non-profit research organization. He has shouldered the responsibilities of a CFO for about 8 years in his career. Mr. Sengupta has worked in GE Capital, GE Healthcare, GE Lighting, Vodafone, Countrywide Financial Corporation / Bank of America, Tata Consultancy Services, ACC Cements and Dunlop amongst other organizations.

Mr. Sengupta is a strategic business partner and out-of-the-box thinker, with successes in business transformation, process redesign for better control and productivity using Six Sigma tools, start-up operations, business/entity restructuring, P&L management, stakeholder management, cost control, risk management, compliance, margin improvement and working capital improvement. He is known for his deliberate and focused approach in leading global multi-cultural teams for reaching business goals.

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Kunal Sarkar

Senior Manager Human Resources & Acting Director HR

Mr Kunal Sarkar is an accomplished professional with more than 17 years of experience across several verticals of strategic Human Resource Management — talent acquisition, compensation and benefits, performance management, talent management, ethics and safeguarding, employee engagement, global mobility and organization development — in telecom, pharmaceutical, IT and ITeS, and  agricultural research. Kunal has been in global leadership roles in multicultural and multidisciplinary work environments in Asia, ANZ and Africa, where he has successfully led HR initiatives to support cultural harmonization and drive change.

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Prabhu Pingali, Chair, ICRISAT Governing Board

Prof. Prabhu Pingali

Chair, ICRISAT Governing Board ,
Founding Director of the Tata-Cornell Institute and a Professor in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management

Prof. Prabhu Pingali is the Founding Director of the Tata-Cornell Institute and a Professor in the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, with a joint appointment in the Division of Nutritional Sciences, in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University. Prior to joining Cornell University, he was the Deputy Director, Agriculture Development Division of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation from 2008-May 2013. Prof. Pingali was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences as a Foreign Fellow in May 2007. He was the President of the International Association of Agricultural Economists (IAAE) from 2003-2006. He was elected Fellow of the American Agricultural Economics Association in 2006 and of the International Association of Agricultural Economists in 2009. Prof. Pingali has spent some time working with the CGIAR for 15 years from 1987-2002, first with IRRI in the Philippines and then with CIMMYT in Mexico.

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Dr S Trilochan Mohapatra

Secretary (DARE) & Director General (ICAR)
Krishi Bhavan
New Delhi, India

Dr Trilochan Mohapatra is an Indian national. He obtained MSc and PhD in Genetics from Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi. Dr Mohapatra is presently holding the position of Secretary, Department of Agricultural Research and Education, and is also the Director General of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). Prior to this, he served as the Director of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi, and the National Rice Research Institute (formerly CRRI), Cuttack, Odisha.

Dr Mohapatra contributed to the development of 12 varieties of rice and mustard including the long grain Basmati variety, Pusa Basmati 1121, and the first high-protein rice variety, CR Dhan 310. Dr Mohapatra has been recipient of several honors and awards recognizing his academic and research contributions, including the INSA Young Scientist Award, Prof LSS Kumar Memorial Award, NAAS-Tata Award, IARI-BP Pal Award, DBT Bio-science Award, NASI-Reliance Industries Platinum Jubilee Award, Shri Om Prakash Bhasin Award 2016, IMS Diamond Jubilee Memorial Award 2016, Dr D. Sundaresan Memorial Oration Award 2017, NASI Lecture Award 2017 and Prof NG Ranga Memorial Award by the Andhra Pradesh Science Congress 2017. He also received the Recognition Award of the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences for the biennium 2013-14 for significant contributions in Plant Improvement and the Lifetime Achievement Awards of the Indian Genetics Congress and the Indian Society of Agricultural Biochemists.

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Sanjay Agarwal

Secretary, Department of Agriculture Cooperation & Farmers Welfare
New Delhi, India

Somesh Kumar

Chief Secretary of Telangana

Mr. Somesh Kumar, born on December, 22, 1963 and a post-graduate in Psychology from the University of Delhi, held key posts in high-profile departments — Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation, Tribal Welfare, Revenue-Commercial Taxes and Excise Collegiate Education, and AP Urban Services for Poor, among other assignments, and had made his mark on the administration.

As Principal Secretary, Revenue, Commercial Taxes and Excise, he ensured smooth transition to the GST regime, introduced IT, Apps, data analytics to plug loopholes and tax evasion and brought about several measures to curb leakage in the excise revenue and earned a reputation as a tough task master. At present, he is also looking after land matters, Registration, CCLA.

His tenure as GHMC Commissioner saw hike in property taxes, introduction of popular ₹5-a-meal and launch of the Strategic Road Development Plan. As head of the Tribal Welfare department, he introduced Chief Minister’s ST Entrepreneurship Innovation Initiative. In the initial years of his career, he served as Sub-Collector, Bodhan and Nizamabad, and later as Collector of Anantapur district.

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Jacqueline Hughes, Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes

Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes is a noted plant health expert. Before assuming charge as Director General at ICRISAT, Dr Hughes was Deputy Director General-Research at IRRI and before that, DDG-R at the World Vegetable Center. Her long association with CGIAR began when she moved from the UK to Ibadan, Nigeria, in the 90s to join IITA as a virologist. With vast experience in leading multidisciplinary teams in Asia and Africa, she is a recognized leader in international agriculture research and management.

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Prof. Sissel Rogne

Director, Institute for Marine Research
Bergen, Norway

She was recently appointed Director General for Institute for Marine Research after being the Director General of The Norwegian Biotechnology Advisory Board advising the Norwegian Government. Besides this she has also been part-time Professor at Dept of Nature conservation, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, and at Dept of Global Public Health and Primary Care, University of Bergen. She has also been Director of Research at the Agricultural University of Norway.

She has broad experience serving on various research councils and boards of research institutes like Chairman of Bio-production and processing (“blue and green sector”) at the Norwegian Research Council, Chairman of the Aquaculture Institute, Akvaforsk; Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Fridtjof Nansen ́s Research Institute; and Member of the Board of Directors of The Norwegian Institute for Gene Ecology. She has been member of the UNESCO IBC (International Bioethics Committee).

During her period as active scientist she authored or coauthored over 30 scientific articles and publications. She was awarded the Norwegian Academic Price for 2012 for her work to promote academic freedom and dissemination of knowledge.

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Laurie Craig Tollefson

Vice President
International Commission on Irrigation and DrainageCanada &
Chair of Nominations Committee

Laurie Craig Tollefson is a Canadian national. He obtained his BSA and MSc degrees from the University of Saskatchewan in Canada.

He is currently the Vice President of the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage. In his career spanning over two decades, he has held various positions including, National Science Manager, Agricultural Water, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC); Director, National Water Quality and Availability Management Project (NAWQAM); Director International Partnership, AAFC; Manager, Irrigation and Diversification, AAFC-AAC; Canadian Headquarters Co-ordinator, NAWQAM; Team Leader – China/Canada Sustainable Agriculture Development Program; and Manager, Canada -Saskatchewan Irrigation Diversification Centre.

He is also associated with professional and voluntary associations such as the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases, Canadian Water Resources Association, Canadian Committee on Irrigation and Drainage, International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage (ICID), Agriculture Institute of Canada, Saskatchewan Institute of Agrologists, and American Society of Agronomy.

Among the accolades he has received are the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2013; The Distinguished Agrologist Award (2009); Outstanding contribution to the Management of the National Water Quality and Availability Management (NAWQAM) Project, Canadian and Egyptian governments (2007); Outstanding contribution to the sustainability of land resources under irrigation and drainage by the Canadian Committee on Irrigation and Drainage (2002).

He has over 44 publications to his credit and has co-authored several book chapters.

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Folasade Ogunde

Chair of the Audit and Risk Committee

Mrs. Folasade Ogunde graduated with a B.Sc (Hons) degree in Economics from the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. Currently, Ms Ogunde holds the position of Director at UPDC Real Estate Investment Trust. She joined the ICRISAT governing board in 2018.

She is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and an associate member of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA). She started her professional career with the firm of Deloitte Haskins & Sells (Chartered Accountants), where she gained accounting and audit experience, had a stint in treasury management before joining UAC of Nigeria Plc in 1997.

She has held such positions as Management Accountant, UAC Foods; Divisional Commercial Director, Mr. Bigg’s (now UAC Restaurants) and Group Treasurer, UAC of Nigeria Plc. She has attended senior management and leadership programmes at Ashridge Management College, UK; Cranfield University, UK and Havard Business School, USA.

She is also on the board of RT Briscoe Plc and Associate Member at International Facility Management Association. Ms Ogunde was also the Executive Director & Finance Director for UACN Property Development Plc, Commercial Director at UAC Foods Ltd. and Group Treasurer at UACN Plc.

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Dr Yilma Kebede

Former Senior Program Officer- Global Development Program,
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Dr Yilma Kebede is a recognized leader in agricultural research and plant breeding, seasoned grant-maker and strategist with more than 30 years of experience implementing and funding agricultural and food security programs via foundations, national and international research centers, and private sector–most recently, successfully funding and managing small grains crop improvement, seed systems and African agricultural development portfolios at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. As an ICRISAT Research Fellow from 2017 to 2019, Dr Kebede supported implementation of breeding program assessment recommendations for ICRISAT mandate crops (Sorghum, Millet, Chick pea, Pigeon pea and Groundnuts).

Under the Global Development Program of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, he served as Senior Program Officer from 2008 to 2016. He spent almost two decades with DuPont Pioneer Hi-Bred International (now Corteva) in research.

Dr Kebede completed PhD in Plant Breeding in Texas A&M University, Texas, USA, and Master of Science in Crop Physiology in University of Guelph, Canada.

He is currently a member of AGRA-PASS Advisory Council. He was also a member of Steering Committee, Dryland Cereals CRP (CGIAR).

Dr Kebede is Ethiopian-American.

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Prof. Yaye Kene Gassama

Professor in plant biotechnology at Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar (UCAD), Senegal

Prof. Gassama is a Senegalese national and Professor in plant biotechnology at Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar (UCAD), Senegal. She is a well-known scientist and has held high ranking positions in the academia, governance and policymaking. She was Senegal’s Minister of Scientific Research in 2005 and chaired African Union’s high level panel on emerging technologies in 2017.

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Dr. Jim Godfrey

Director and Chair of the UK’s National Institute of Agricultural Botany

Dr. Godfrey is a distinguished research leader and was the Chair of IRRI’s Board of Trustees. He is a UK national and has been associated with several leading research institutions. Dr. Godfrey is the Director and Chair of the UK’s National Institute of Agricultural Botany.

Dr. Godfrey was the President of the Royal Agricultural Society of England during 2018-2019. He has been appointed to several Boards and has chaired many of them, including those of CGIAR centers. His association with CGIAR pans several years, as former Chair of CIP (2000-2008) and that of the Alliance of 15 CGIAR centers (2006-2007). He also chaired the CGIAR Board Orientation and Training Program and organized annual courses throughout the world to train over 400 trustees.

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Ms. Cathy Reade

Director of Outreach at the Crawford Fund

Ms. Reade, an Australian national, is the Director of Outreach at the Crawford Fund. She spent her early career working for a range of advocacy groups and, in addition to establishing the public awareness program for the Crawford Fund, Ms. Reade’s consultancy concentrated in the not-for-profit sector around agriculture, development, S&T and environment policy, issues and events. She also developed and manages a master class in communications for scientists in developing countries, and directs the Fund’s NextGen suite of activities. Ms Reade was on the Board and Executive Committee of the World Vegetable Center from 2014-2019, and chaired their Nominations Committee.

The Alliance of CGIAR Centers recognized her contributions with a special award in 2007.

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Renerose Tan Ng

Governing Board Secretary, and Advisor, Governance and Compliance

Ms. Ng is a Governance Professional and is an advocate of value-shared governance. Her work experience focused on Legal Administration, Corporate Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance. She joined ICRISAT in 2016 when she was appointed as Secretary of the Governing Board, and Advisor, Governance and Compliance. In her past career, she collaborated in the regions of APAC and Europe for Risk and Compliance projects, KYC and AMLA, and was a certified Local Security Officer for ISO 27000:2013 (lead implementer) in 2015.

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AllCrop BreedingCrop Protection & Seed HealthGenomics, pre-breeding & BioinformaticsCell & Molecular Biology and Trait EngineeringGenebankCrop Physiology and Modelling

Dr Rajeev K Varshney

Research Program Director – Accelerated Crop Improvement

Dr Rajeev Varshney is Research Program Director – Accelerated Crop Improvement, at ICRISAT, based in Hyderabad, India. He has a Ph.D. in Agricultural Botany (Molecular Biology) from CCS University, India. He joined ICRISAT in 2005 and in his dual appointment also served the CGIAR Generation Challenge Program (hosted by CIMMYT, Mexico) as SubProgramme Leader 2, for 6 years. Before joining ICRISAT, Rajeev worked at IPK-Gatersleben, Germany for 5 years. He holds Adjunct/ Honorary position with >10 organizations, and provides leadership to several organizations by serving as member/chair for several committees, editorial boards, funding organizations and advisory boards, etc.

Rajeev is recognized as a leader in genome sequencing, genomics-assisted breeding, translational genomics and capacity building in international agriculture. He has made a pioneering contribution by integrating advanced discoveries in genomics with crop improvement especially in legumes in developing countries. Among different noted contributions, he has genome sequence of 10 crops including pigeonpea, chickpea, groundnut and pearl millet and several molecular breeding products in chickpea and groundnut to his credit. Genomics resources developed by his colleagues and collaborators are being used in several breeding programs with an objective to modernizing crop improvement in developing countries. He has provided strategic leadership, as a Principal Investigator, to Tropical Legumes projects, that have facilitated the release of 266 improved legumes varieties and production of about 498,034 tons of certified seeds with the benefit potential to over 5.0 million ha and over 25 million smallholder farmers in 15 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

Areas of expertise: Applied Genomics, Molecular breeding, Crop biotechnology, Genomics-assisted Breeding, Translational genomics & Capacity Building

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Dr Harish Gandhi

Cluster Leader – Crop Breeding
Principal Scientist

Dr Rajan Sharma

Cluster Leader – Crop Protection & Seed Health
Principal Scientist

Dr Rajan Sharma is a Principal Scientist and the Leader of the Crop Protection and Seed Health Cluster, Global Research Program on Accelerated Crop Improvement at ICRISAT Headquarters based in Hyderabad, India. His core competencies include monitoring the virulence spectrum of plant pathogens; development of PCR-compatible markers and their use in genetic diversity assessment and mapping of avirulence genes; elucidating molecular basis of host-pathogen interaction; identification and utilization of resistance sources for disease management; development of diagnostic protocols and salvaging techniques for infested/infected germplasm. He has guided over 10 MSc and PhD students, mentored many researchers and PDFs, and organized training/capacity building programs for NARS in Asia and Africa.

Expertise in: Host plant resistance, virulence characterization, phenotyping, fungal genomics, epidemiology, seed pathology, integrated disease management

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Dr Damaris A Odeny

Cluster Leader – Genomics, pre-breeding & Bioinformatics
Principal Scientist

Damaris Odeny is a plant molecular breeder with research experience in Africa, Asia, Europe and USA. She has led and implemented genomics projects in both cereals and legumes, including the development of genomic resources in several orphan crops. Damaris works closely with other disciplines from national, private and international institutes to develop cutting-edge genomic resources for all ICRISAT mandate crops (sorghum, pearl millet, finger millet, groundnut, chickpea and pigeonpea) in her current global role. Prior to this, she worked as a senior researcher at the Agricultural Research Council (ARC), South Africa, where she played a key role in establishing molecular breeding processes for indigenous vegetables. Damaris is also passionate about mentoring of young upcoming scientists and has successfully mentored more than 50 scientists in her career to date.

Areas of expertise: Qualitative and quantitative genetics; Genetic mapping; Pre-breeding; Plant genetic engineering; Mutation breeding; Statistical genomics; High throughput genotyping and marker development; Next-Generation Sequencing and data analysis; Transcriptome analysis; Metagenomics

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Dr Pooja Bhatnagar-Mathur

Cluster Leader – Cell & Molecular Biology and Trait Engineering
Principal Scientist

Dr Pooja Bhatnagar Mathur is Research Cluster Leader of Cell & Molecular Biology and Trait Engineering, ICRISAT. Based at Hyderabad, India, Pooja is responsible for the initiation, acquisition and execution of strategic innovations at ICRISAT in the field of cell and tissue technologies, biotechnology and genome editing in crop plants with a focus on development, implementation and routine application of methodologies to support the breeding processes.

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Dr Kuldeep Singh

Cluster Leader – Genebank
Head (Consultant)

Dr Jana Kholova

Cluster Leader – Crop Physiology and Modelling
Senior Scientist

Jana Kholová is Senior Scientist with the theme System Analysis for Climate Smart Agriculture (SACSA) at ICRISAT, based in Hyderabd/India. With the PhD in Genetics from Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic, with specialization in plant genetics and physiology. Her core competencies include dissection of environment-adaptive traits and translating them into high-throughput phenotyping methods, using system modelling tools to characterize target environments and predict the effect of adaptive traits in target agro-ecologies. She is currently coordinating multiple research projects, has published ~ 29 articles (H-index of 14) and has citations exceeding 650 (2017).

My expertise: Integration of interdiciplinary research to enhance the cropping systems production improvement; plant stress physiology, modelling, genetics, phenotyping, plant nutrition, biochemistry and molecular biology.

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Sudhakar R Palakolanu

Sudhakar R Palakolanu

Scientist

SK Gupta

Principal Scientist

Dr P Janila

Principal Scientist – Groundnut Breeding

Dr A Ashok Kumar

Principal Scientist – Product Placement Lead

Ashok Kumar is a Principal Scientist (Plant Breeding) at International Crops Research Institute for the Semiarid Tropics (ICRISAT), India heading the sorghum breeding research. With Ph D from Division of Genetics, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, he has 19 years of research experience in the area of genetics, plant breeding for improved products development in various crops particularly sorghum and castor. Since 2006, his major focus is on developing innovative approaches that enhance breeding efficiency for higher genetic gain in sorghum for various end-uses- food, feed, fodder and fuel. Besides improving sorghum for food, feed and forage, he is currently leading the projects on genetic diversification of hybrid parents, biofortifying sorghum with higher grain Zn and Fe concentration and developing sorghums amenable for first (1G) and second generation (2G) bioenergy production. He was instrumental in release of first biofortified sorghum variety ‘Parbhani Shakti’ and worked extensively in seed systems development for increased adoption of cultivars. He has published 82 journal articles, 40 book chapters, 50 conference papers and co-authored six books. He has >40 international partnerships in various projects. He is currently guiding five Ph D students.

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S Srinivasan

Senior Scientist (Chickpea Breeding)

Prakash I Gangashetty

Scientist – Pigeonpea Breeding

Yogendra Kalenahalli

Scientist

Sunita Choudhary

Scientist

Dr Hari Kishan Sudini

Cluster Leader – Science Quality & Strategy
Principal Scientist – Groundnut Pathology

Hari Kishan Sudini is Principal Scientist (Groundnut Pathology), Research Program-Asia, at ICRISAT, based in Hyderabad, India.

Hari obtained his PhD in 2009 from Auburn University, USA, majoring in plant pathology. During his doctoral studies, Hari worked on soil microbial community structure and aflatoxin contamination in different peanut-based crop rotations.

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Dr Mamta Sharma

Cluster Leader – Precision Phenotyping
Principal Scientist

S Gopalakrishnan

Principal Scientist – Microbiology

S Gopalakrishnan, Principal Scientist (Microbiology), Integrated Crop Managment (ICM),Research Program-Asia, works at ICRISAT headquarters in Hyderabad, India.

Dr Gopalakrishnan has a PhD in Biology (Microbiology/Plant Pathology) from University College London (UCL), London, followed by three years as a postdoc at Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences (JIRCAS), Tsukuba, Japan. He was the recipient of the prestigious European Union, JIRCAS and Japan Society for Promotion of Science (JSPS) fellowships for his doctoral and postdoctoral research, respectively.

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Dr Jagdish Jaba

Jaba Jagdish is Scientist under the Theme Integrated Crop Management (Research Program – Asia), at ICRISAT, Hyderabad, India. He holds a PhD from G.B. Pant University of Agriculture & Technology, Pantnagar, India. Jaba was fellow of ICAR-SRF for pursuing PhD programme and awarded as best research paper award at 2nd Bio-pesticide international conference during 2009. He was awarded first grant as principal investigator from ICRISAT and young scientist award from EET CRS, Mumbai. His earlier experiences include as a Research Associate (UAS-Raichur); Regional agronomist (DuPont), Subject Matter Specialist and visiting scientist. He is editorial member of three international and two national plant protection journals. He has published more than 26 reserach articles in national and international journals.

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Dr Raju Ghosh

Dr Raju Ghosh is currently a Scientist in Legumes Pathology. In his earlier seven-year stint at ICRISAT, he worked as a Special Project Scientist. His aim is to decipher the hitherto unexplored world of begomoviruses in India. He is actively involved in basic and applied research in pathogenomics and proteomics of plant pathogen interactions, and developing cost effective diagnostic tools in combating fungal diseases in legumes. He is also involved in research activities of ICRISAT’s Center of Excellence on Climate Change Research for Plant Protection (CCRPP) and the applied aspects of agriculture extension to promote chickpea in different Indian states.

Dr Ghosh has a PhD in Genetics (Plant Virology) from the University of Calcutta and has done post-doctoral work at the Plant Virus Referral Testing Laboratory of the Indian Agriculture Research Institute (IARI), Pusa, New Delhi.

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M Vetriventhan

Senior Scientist (Genetic Resources)

Vetriventhan is a Scientist (Genetic Resources), in the Genebank, Research Program – Genetic Gains,  at ICRISAT-Hyderabad.

He obtained his PhD in Plant Breeding and Genetics from Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU), Tamil Nadu, India. He is involved in genebank activities on sorghum and six small millets (finger millet, foxtail millet, proso millet, kodo millet, little millet and barnyard millet), on subjects such as germplasm characterization, regeneration, conservation and documentation. His research activities focus on enhancing use of germplasm in crop improvement, such as forming representative germplasm sets (core/mini core), germplasm gap identification, evaluation and identification of trait specific germplasm sources, developing genetic and genomic resources and so on.

Expertise in: Plant breeding and genetics; plant genetic resources

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Ovais Hamid Peerzada

Manager – Genebank Quality Manager

Muzamil Baig

Manager – Genebank Quality Manager

Senthil Ramachandran

Manager – Germplasm Conservation

Dr K Hima Bindu

Senior Scientist-Genomics and Molecular Breeding

Hima Bindu Kudapa, Scientist, Genomics and Molecular Breeding, Forward & Integrated Breeding, Research Program – Genetic Gains, works for ICRISAT at Hyderabad.

Her basic background is in molecular biology and her research focus is on functional genomics for crop improvement.

Expertise in: Genomics, molecular biology, functional biology, molecular breeding, plants interaction to biotic and abiotic stresses

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Dr Manish K Pandey

Senior Scientist – Groundnut Genomics

Dr Manish Roorkiwal

Senior Scientist-Genomics and Molecular Breeding

Manish Roorkiwal is Scientist – Genomics and Molecular Breeding, at ICRISAT, based in Hyderabad, India. With a basic background in molecular genetics and applied genomics, Manish obtained his PhD in Biotechnology from GGSIP University, Delhi. He has over 10 years of research experience. At the core of his work is the improvement of crop productivity of legumes in marginal environments in Africa and Asia using modern genetics and breeding approaches, including genomic selection and GWAS. After joining ICRISAT, he has been working in the area of genomics and molecular breeding with special emphasis on next generation sequencing technology including SNP genotyping and whole genome re-sequencing. He has been using modern breeding approaches such as genomic selection to address the issue of low productivity in chickpea. In his current role, he has been working as an interface between the Genomics and Breeding programs to deploy markers in routine breeding and to work towards the initiation of forward breeding at ICRISAT.

My expertise: Genomics, forward breeding, next generation sequencing, modern breeding approaches such as genomic selection and Marker Assisted Backcrossing

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Dr Rachit Kumar Saxena

Senior Scientist – Applied Genomics

Dr Rakesh K Srivastava

Senior Scientist – Chickpea Genomics Genomics & Trait Discovery

Dr Santosh P Deshpande

Senior Scientist – Molecular Breeding

Prasad Bajaj

Manager-Computational Biology

AllNutrition, Dietary Behavior and smart foodTechnology adoption and impact analysisMarkets, institutions and policyGender and YouthAgri Business Innovation PlatformKnowledge & Capacity Development

Dr Michael Hauser

Research Program Director – Enabling Systems Transformation

Michael Hauser is an agro-ecologist specialized in farm and food system changes. In partnership with farmer associations, universities, civil society, and the private sector in Africa and Asia, Michael conducts theory-led research on critical transitions towards sustainable natural resource management, extension approaches, and marketing strategies to enable farmers to participate in markets. Before joining ICRISAT early 2017, Michael chaired AGRINATURA, the Alliance on Agricultural Knowledge for Development representing the major European research and education stakeholders in development-oriented research and higher education. These include universities and research centres dealing with tropical and subtropical agriculture, forestry, food and human nutrition, veterinary medicine, fisheries, and environmental sciences. AGRINATURA collaborates with organisation and networks to develop research and higher education capacities, such as the GFAR, EFARD, as well as the European Commission, CGIAR, FAO, IFAD, FARA, and RUFORUM. Michael Hauser was Director of the Centre for Development Research at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna. Under his directorship, the Centre brokered and coordinated inter- and transdisciplinary agricultural research for development across university departments, civil society and the private sector. Michael supervises doctoral students and teaches under- and postgraduate classes on livelihood system dynamics and change facilitation. For his courses on sustainable agriculture with East African universities, he received the University Teaching Award recognising innovative training programs.

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Wanjiku Nyawira Gichohi

Cluster Leader – Nutrition, Dietary Behavior and Smart Food
Scientist

Mequanint Biset Melesse

Cluster Leader – Technology Adoption and Impact Analysis
Senior Scientist

Dr Mequanint B Melesse is a Senior Scientist at ICRISAT, based in Nairobi, Kenya. Currently, Mequanint leads the Technology Adoption and Impact Analysis Cluster under the Enabling Systems Transformation Global Research Program. He holds a PhD in Development Economics from Wageningen University and a research master (MSc, cum laude) degree in Economics and Business from the University of Groningen (both in Netherlands).

Prior to joining ICRISAT, he has held a post-doctoral researcher position at the Development Economics Group, Wageningen University. Mequanint has had extensive research and field experience, led several large-scale household surveys in Africa, and managed research projects. With a focus on agricultural and rural development in the drylands, his main research interests are in the fields of agricultural and development economics, including technology needs assessment and (dis)adoption, causal impact analysis, impact scaling approaches and strategies for agricultural innovations, sustainable food systems, consumer behavior and market research, analysis of roles of research and policy in promoting systems transformations, and technological innovations in data science for data-driven agriculture. His research uses a variety of quantitative and qualitative approaches, including framed experiments and games, quasi-experimental approaches, randomized evaluations and non-experimental approaches.

Expertise in: Technology needs assessment and (dis)adoption, causal impact analysis, rural livelihood, sustainable food systems, consumer behavior and market research, market segments and product profiles, farm household analysis, impact scaling approaches and strategies for agricultural innovations, data-driven agriculture and project development

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Dr Shalander Kumar

Cluster Leader – Socioeconomist – Markets, Institutions and Policies
Principal Scientist

Shalander Kumar, Principal Scientist, Innovation Systems for the Drylands, at ICRISAT-Hyderabad, has carried out extensive research for more than two decades in the field of economics of rainfed farming systems, whole farm modeling to support decision making at household and regional levels,  and ex-ante & trade-off analysis to assess the impact of climate smart interventions. Other areas of active intervention include: livestock production and marketing systems, farm-level rainwater harvesting, potential for conservation agriculture, climate change impacts and extension systems in India and Africa. As a systems scientist he has contributed to promoting integrated systems approaches (AR4D), farm typology building approaches, ex-ante analysis & innovation systems approaches for co-designing resilient farming systems in dry areas. Further work was on assessing climate change impacts and building scaling up strategies for climate smart agriculture, institutional options for management of agriculture and common property resources, innovation platforms as instruments for enhancing technology adoption, and strengthening agricultural value chains.

Expertise in: Agricultural economics, farming systems analysis, whole farm modelling and tradeoff analysis, climate change impact and risk management strategies, innovation systems approach for co-designing sustainable intesification of farming systems

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Jummai Othnielyila

Cluster Leader – Gender and Youth
Senior Scientist

Dr Kiran K Sharma

Director – CRP GLDC
Cluster Leader – Agri Business Innovation Platform

Kiran Sharma is Cluster Leader – Agri Business Innovation Platform, and Principal Scientist- Cell Biology at ICRISAT,  based in Hyderabad. He leads AIP as its CEO, devising strategies for project/program planning and management, agribusiness entrepreneuership, public-private partnerships and value-addition for nutritional enhancement to address malnutrition, hunger and poverty through inclusive market-oriented development.

Expertise in: Project planning and management, agribusiness entrepreneurship, genetic engineering & molecular biology for crop improvement, translation of genetic engineering technologies

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Dr Thomas Falk

Cluster Leader – Institutional Economist
Senior Scientist

An institutional economist by specialization, Dr Thomas Falk has done extensive research in the field of governance in agricultural systems in developing countries. Since 2015, at ICRISAT, he contributes to the assessment of sustainable agricultural system transformations, the assessment of ecosystem services and related governance implications, as well as the development of scalable tools to trigger sustainable behavioral change. He has substantial expertise in the fields of economics of natural resource management; multi-level governance in social-ecological systems (SES); science-policy interaction and trans-disciplinarity; economic institutions and institutional change in natural resource management.

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Dr R Padmaja

Senior Scientist – Gender Research

Padmaja Ravula is Senior Scientist – Gender research at ICRISAT, India with Markets, Institutions, Nutrition and Diversity (MIND) under Research Program on Innovation Systems for the Drylands (ISD). With PhD in Humanities and Social Sciences (Specialization: Sociology) from the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay (IIT-B). A Gold Medalist for her Masters Degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Pandit Jayashankar Telangana State Agricultural University. A Sociologist by education and training with 20 years of interdisciplinary quantitative and qualitative research on issues related gender, nutrition, social capital and empowerment. A unique competence of training in nutrition research as well as sociological research. Has broad experience working in close collaboration with national and international research institutions, academic institutes, farmers, NGOs, donors and governments. Good team player in multi-disciplinary teams. Well versed with and practitioner of PRA tools and methods. Has more than 54 publications and contributed to development of several research papers and journal articles including impact series, policy briefs, conference papers, edited books, research bulletins and papers in edited books. A Creative thinker, and therefore also interested in bringing out non-conventional/non-academic but interactive products like timelines, video documentaries, visual tools for data collection and analysis. Notable contributions apart from publications, knowledge management and information dissemination include designing and developing methodological tools and frameworks for gender research, with an emphasis on empowerment of rural poor, nutrition and institutions (formal and informal); training and capacity building of student interns, research scholars and PhD students, field staff, researchers including partners to integrate gender and nutrition in social science research activities.

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Dr S Nedumaran

Senior Scientist – Economics

Nedumaran Swamikannu is Senior Scientist (Economics) from the Research Program for Innovation Systems for the Drylands (ISD), International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), based in Hyderabad/India. Obtained Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from Tamilnadu Agricultural University and a post-doctoral fellow from University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany. Well-trained in agricultural economics and working as Senior Scientist in Research Program on Markets, Institutions and Policies (MIND) at ICRISAT, India. With ten years of experience in the field of development policy analysis, natural resource management (NRM), foresight and scenario analysis of dryland crops, adaptation and mitigation to climate change and ex-ante impact assessment of technologies and development program, and has conducted research in collaboration with multiple stakeholders both Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. Current projects led at ICRISAT (1) Global Futures Projects for Agriculture; (2) Foresight and scenario analysis under CRP-Policies, Institutions and Markets. (3) ICRISAT-SLU project on the dynamics of Urban Sprawl. Also coordinating and conducting research in CRP- CCAFS on climate change impacts for ICRISAT mandate crops as well as in crop model improvement to assess the potential of promising crop technologies under climate change condition. Also contributed immensely to address the targeting and priority setting concern of CRP Dryland Cereals and Grain Legumes by using his analytical prowess harnessing national, regional, meso and micro farm level database.

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Dr Mathieu Ouedraogo

Senior Scientist – Agricultural Economics

Dr Felix Badolo

Senior Scientist – Agricultural Economics

Dr D Kumara Charyulu

Senior Scientist, Agricultural Economics

Anitha Seetha

Senior Scientist – Nutrition

Dr Sabine Homann Kee Tui

Senior Scientist – Social Scientist

Sabine Homann is a social scientist in the Research Team Markets, Institutions, Nutrition and Diversity (MIND), Research Program Innovation Systems for the Drylands (ISD), International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), based in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. With a PhD from Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany, in Agricultural Sciences. Research focus is on sustainability transitions for crop livestock farming systems in African Drylands, using innovation systems, value chain development and stakeholder engagement approaches, with a combined 15 years working experience. Expertise covers farming systems analyses, knowledge brokerage and social learning supporting market led development. For devising climate change adaptation strategies and influencing decisions towards sustainable development pathways, uses multi-modelling approaches and future scenario development with stakeholders. Through participatory and action-oriented research design feeds concrete information and practical experience into development and policy relevant dialogues, and contributes to better understanding of decision making processes in agriculture. Has authored and co-authored more than 20 Journal publications, and a wide range of communication products for research, development and policy audiences, including booklets, book chapters, information briefs, blogs and videos, a H-index of 7, 7 and 261 citations.

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Saikat Datta Mazumdar

Chief Operating Officer – NutriPlus Knowledge Program

S Aravazhi

Chief Operating Officer – Innovation and Partnership Program

Jonathan Philroy

Manager

Purushotham Rudraraju

Manager – Agribusiness

AllClimate Adaptation and MitigationLandscapes, Soil Fertility and Water ManagementGeospatial and Big Data SciencesDigital AgricultureICRISAT Development Center

Dr Anthony Whitbread

Research Program Director – Resilient Farm and Food Systems

Dr Anthony Whitbread is the Research Program Director – Resilient Farm and Food Systems, based in Hyderabad, India. With a PhD from the University of New England in Soil Science and Agronomy, Dr Whitbread leads a team of 30+ scientists across south Asia and sub-Saharan Africa in an innovation systems mode devising strategies to manage climatic risk, soil fertility and identifying market led development opportunities. This role was preceded by a 20 year research career in the crop-livestock systems of semi-arid Australia, SE Asia and Southern Africa. His team based work has received recognition with the “2006 CSIRO Learning Culture Award” and the 2013 CSIRO team medal for ‘Impact from Science’. In 2011, he became full Professor (W3) of Crop Production Systems in the Tropics at the Georg-August-Universität in Göttingen, Germany combining his passions of teaching and applied research. He has published widely with more than 55 journal articles, a H-index of 21 and citations exceeding 2400.

My specialization: Agronomy and soil science, farm systems analysis, crop modelling, climate risk management, spatial analysis

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Robert B Zougmore

Cluster Leader – Climate Adaptation and Mitigation
Principal Scientist

Robert B. Zougmoré  is the Africa Program Leader of the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS), based at ICRISAT, Bamako, Mali.

By training an agronomist and soil scientist with a PhD in Production Ecology & Resources Conservation from the University of Wageningen, The Netherlands, he is defining and overseeing strategic directions for CCAFS research in the West and Central Africa (WCA) region. This involves coordinating actions that lead to coherent implementation of regional activities from participating Centres and other regional and national partners. One of his major tasks is to communicate regional research outputs and strategy through innovative means in order to project a highly professional image for CCAFS and the CGIAR. He also contributes to the themes of Systems Analysis, and Policy and Impact within the ICRISAT regional research program in WCA.

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Dr Birhanu Zemadim Birhanu

Cluster Leader – Landscapes, Soil Fertility and Water Management
Senior Scientist

Dr Birhanu Zemadim Birhanu is a Research Cluster Leader for Landscapes, Soil Fertility and Water Management under the Global Program Resilient Farm and Food Systems, ICRISAT, based in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Dr Birhanu is specialized in Land and Water Resources Management with over 12 years’ professional and project management experience in Eastern and Western Africa. A former Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Dr Birhanu has been a project manager for multiple donor-funded projects over the years.

Areas of expertise: Agricultural Land and Water Management, Hydrology, Participatory Watershed Management, Field-to-Landscape Scale Technology Evaluation and Scaling, Numerical Modelling & Capacity Building.

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Dr Murali Krishna Gumma

Cluster Leader – Geospatial and Big Data Sciences
Senior Scientist

Murali Krishna Gumma is Head of Remote Sensing/Geographic Information System unit and Senior Scientist – GIS/Geospatial science with ICRISAT, working across Asia and Africa. Prior to this, he was a Remote Sensing Specialist and PDF at IRRI and a project scientist with IWMI. Murali Krishna has over 18 years’ experience in remote sensing and geographic information systems and their application to agriculture, wetlands, river basin management, natural resource management, water resources, forests, sustainable development, and environmental studies. His work experience spans over 30 countries spread across Asia and Africa. He is currently working on seasonally updated information on dryland cereals and legumes agro-ecologies; characterization of abiotic and biotic stresses in major dryland cereal growing areas; developing the spatial model for selecting best sites for legume cultivation in rice-fallows; estimating the area of adoption of short duration legumes (drought resistance); and impact assessment and supporting multidisciplinary teams across ICRISAT using multi-resolution remote sensing and GIS spatial modelling.

My expertise: Remote sensing and geographic information systems

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Ram Kiran Dhulipala

Cluster Leader – Digital Agriculture
Senior Manager

Ram Dhulipala leads the Digital Agriculture Theme at ICRISAT, Hyderabad. After obtaining his engineering degree from Government Engineering College, Hyderabad, he also acquired an MBA in 2011.

He worked as a software engineer in Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) from 2004 to 2010. In TCS, he worked primarily in the telecom domain for customers, such as Ericsson, and British Telecom; and was into technologies like VOIP, OSI stack and SIP programming. He also has rich experience in architecting solutions in Enterprise IT environments. As a manager he has worked in executive positions in the corporate sector in the areas of finance, corporate strategy, program management and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) across diverse sectors. Ram is a strong believer in partnerships and has managed complex projects that bring together people/teams with diverse skills and backgrounds.

Expertise in: Technologies such as VOIP, OSI stack and SIP programming; architecting solutions in Enterprise IT environments; finance, corporate strategy, and program management

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Dr Sreenath Dixit

Cluster Leader – ICRISAT Development Center
Principal Scientist

Dr Sreenath Dixit is Principal Scientist & Head, IDC based in Patancheru, India, since January 2018. He is currently working with the ICRISAT Development Center, Research Program-Asia on developing strategies for capacity building and large-scale uptake of science-backed technologies to achieve impact on the ground.

With a doctorate in Agricultural Extension from the Universality of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, India (1993), he works on capacity building strategies to implement multi-disciplinary, multi-institute consortium projects on ground with focus on scaling up across large areas.  He belongs to the 1990 batch of Agricultural Research Service (ARS) of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). His efforts have led to many ICAR awards, such as Vasantrao Naik Award for Dryland Agriculture and Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed Award for Tribal Agriculture improvement besides the Young Scientist award of the Indian Society of Extension Education early in his career.

Expertise in: Participatory natural resource management, innovative institutional mechanisms for promoting sustainable rural livelihoods in fragile ecosystems, technology testing and frontline extension strategies, location-specific adaptations to climate change and ICTs in agricultural extension

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Robert Amos Ngwira

Scientist–Systems Agronomist & Modeler For Climate

AllCrop Improvement Operations Team CIOTSequencing & Genomics ServicesRapid Generation AdvancementFarm and Engineering ServicesData Management & Analytical Support

Dr Arvind Kumar

Deputy Director General – Research
Regional Director – Asia

Dr Arvind Kumar is an experienced crop scientist with more than 28 years’ experience in crop improvement, trait discovery to drought tolerance, disease- insect resistance and translational research. As Deputy Director General- Research, he leads and provides strategic direction to ICRISAT research in the area of climate resilience, nutrition, crop improvement, genomics-trait development, crops-water-soil-disease management, policy, agribusiness, market linkages and capacity development for ICRISAT-mandated crops grown mostly in the semi-arid regions of the world.

He has a PhD from Indira Gandhi Agricultural University, Raipur- International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, in plant breeding and post-doctoral training from the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines, on molecular breeding.

Expertise in: Project planning, management and strategy development, molecular breeding for crop improvement, translation research and climate resilience

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Dr Sobhan Babu Sajja

Cluster Leader – Crop Improvement Operations Team (CIOT)
Senior Scientist

Annapurna Chitikineni

Cluster Leader – Sequencing and Genomics Services
Senior Manager

Dr Anupama J Hingane

Cluster Leader – Rapid Generation Advancement
Scientist

Suresh C Pillay

Cluster Leader – Farm & Engineering Services
Head

Suresh C Pillay is Head of Farm & Engineering Services, Research Program-Asia,  and is based at ICRISAT, Hyderabad. He has been working with ICRISAT since the last 29 years.

He holds a BSc in Agricultural Engineering from Allahabad University, India. Prior to joining ICRISAT  Pillay had a brief stint with Southern Region Farm Machinery Testing & Training Institute (SRFMT&TI),   a Government of India organization involved in testing farm machinery and equipment and training progressive farmers/entreprenuers in mechanized farming.

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Dr Abhishek Rathore

Cluster Leader – Data Management and Analytical Support
Principal Scientist

Anil Kumar Vemula

Manager – Data Curator

Roma Rani Das

Manager – Data Curator

C Buchappa

Head- Farm & Engineering Services

Girish S Panchariya

AllEthiopiaMalawiKenyaMozambiqueZimbabweFarm ServicesCrop Improvement Operations Team CIOTRapid Generation AdvancementPrecision Phenotyping for biotic, abiotic stresses & nutrition

Dr Rebbie Harawa

Regional Director and Country Representative Kenya
Eastern & Southern Africa

Dr Rebbie Harawa is an agricultural research and development expert with extensive work experience across Africa. Before joining ICRISAT, she worked for the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa as Head of the Soil Fertility and Fertilizer Systems program based in Nairobi, Kenya. Previous positions include Country Team Leader and Science Coordinator for United Nations Development Programme Millennium Villages Project and On-farm Research Specialist for World Agroforestry (ICRAF) in Malawi. Rebbie holds a PhD in Soil Science with minor in Extension from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA and a Master of Science Degree in Agronomy from Bunda College of Agriculture, University of Malawi.

Specialization: Soil Science, Agronomy, Agricultural Extension, Climate Smart Agriculture, Sustainable Food Systems and Program Management.

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Dr Patrick Okori

Country Representative – Mozambique
Cluster Leader – Seed Systems
Principal Scientist

Dr Andre F van Rooyen

Country Representative – Ethiopia
Principal Scientist

André F. van Rooyen is Principal Scientist specializing in crop-livestock systems in the research program on Innovation Systems for Drylands (ISD), at ICRISAT, based in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, Holds a PhD from the University of Kwa-Zulu, Natal, South Africa. Uses complex adaptive systems (CAS) characteristics to analyze system functionality and explore opportunities to improve and develop more diverse and integrated agricultural systems. Working in both dryland and irrigation systems where cereal crops, legumes and livestock complement each another, utilizes Innovation Platforms, working with a diverse range of value chain players, to increase on-farm production and improved market integration. Work is based on the hypotheses that integrated agricultural systems, linked to functional markets, increase land, labor and water productivity, resulting in increased system efficiency and environmental sustainability, while providing routes out of poverty for small scale farmers.

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Martin Philani Moyo

Country Representative – Zimbabwe
Senior Scientist

Dr Samuel M C Njoroge

Country Representative – Malawi
Senior Scientist – Legume / Cereal Pathology

Macdonald Bright Jumbo

Cluster Leader – Crop Improvement Operations Team – CIOT Operations
Senior Scientist

Dr Henry Fred Ojulong

Cluster Leader – Precision Phenotyping for biotic, abiotic stresses & nutrition
Senior Scientist

Shamwarira Robert

Cluster Leader – Farm Services
Scientific Officer

Hapson Mushoriwa

Cluster Leader – Rapid Generation Advancement
Principal Scientist

AllMaliNigerNigeriaCrop Improvement Operations Team CIOTPrecision Phenotyping for biotic, abiotic stresses & nutritionFarm ServicesRapid Generation Advancement

Dr Ramadjita Tabo

Regional Director and Country Representative Mali
West & Central Africa

Dr Ramadjita Tabo is a cropping systems agronomist with a PhD in Agronomy and Plant Genetics from the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona, USA in 1985. He is currently the Research Program Director-West and Central Africa and Country Representative, Mali. Prior to his current position he was the Deputy Executive Director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) based in Accra, Ghana (September 2009 to February 2014). Prior to that he was the Assistant Director of ICRISAT-WCA and cropping systems at ICRISAT-Niamey, Niger. Ramadjita worked and was based at various ICRISAT locations including Hyderabad/Patancheru, India; Kano, Nigeria; Bamako, Mali and Niamey, Niger.  He is a member of several  committees amongst which is the Pan-African START (a global Change for Change System for Analysis, Research and Training) Regional Committee (PACOM) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). He won several awards one of which is the prestigious 2007 Nobel Peace prize as a member of the IPCC.  He also chaired the Advisory Board of the IDRC funded AfricaInteract  project (Enabling research-to-policy linkage for adaptation to climate change in Africa). He coordinated the Desert Margins Program (DMP) GEF funded project on arresting land degradation and conserving biodiversity in sub-Saharan Africa and the Challenge Program on Water and Food funded (CPWF) project on enhancing rainwater and nutrient use efficiency in the Volta Basin. His previous research work also included evaluation and promotion of fertilizer microdosing technology and warrantage system, intensification of integrated crop-livestock system. He has published several papers in scientific journals and proceedings.

My expertise: Cropping systems agronomist,  climate risk management, Cropping systems agronomy and physiology, Integrated soil, water and fertility management, Integrated Crop-Livestock systems, systems modelling, Resource Mobilization and Team Management

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Dr Malick Niango Ba

Country Representative – Niger
Principal Scientist

Dr Hakeem Ajeigbe

Country Representative – Nigeria
Principal Scientist

Ousmane Sanogo

Cluster Leader – Crop Improvement Operations Team (CIOT)
Consultant

Mamourou Sidibe

Cluster Leader – Precision Phenotyping for biotic, abiotic stresses & nutrition
Scientific Officer

Yaya Malle

Cluster Leader – Farm Services
Research Technician

Hadidjatou Nana Sogodogo

Cluster Leader – Rapid Generation Advancement
Research Technician

AllDirector General's OfficeDeputy Director General's OfficeGenebankCorporate ServicesCommunicationsBusiness DevelopmentHuman Resources
Jacqueline Hughes, Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes

Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes is a noted plant health expert. Before assuming charge as Director General at ICRISAT, Dr Hughes was Deputy Director General-Research at IRRI and before that, DDG-R at the World Vegetable Center. Her long association with CGIAR began when she moved from the UK to Ibadan, Nigeria, in the 90s to join IITA as a virologist. With vast experience in leading multidisciplinary teams in Asia and Africa, she is a recognized leader in international agriculture research and management.

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Dr Arvind Kumar

Deputy Director General – Research
Regional Director – Asia

Dr Arvind Kumar is an experienced crop scientist with more than 28 years’ experience in crop improvement, trait discovery to drought tolerance, disease- insect resistance and translational research. As Deputy Director General- Research, he leads and provides strategic direction to ICRISAT research in the area of climate resilience, nutrition, crop improvement, genomics-trait development, crops-water-soil-disease management, policy, agribusiness, market linkages and capacity development for ICRISAT-mandated crops grown mostly in the semi-arid regions of the world.

He has a PhD from Indira Gandhi Agricultural University, Raipur- International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, New Delhi, in plant breeding and post-doctoral training from the International Rice Research Institute, Philippines, on molecular breeding.

Expertise in: Project planning, management and strategy development, molecular breeding for crop improvement, translation research and climate resilience

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Joanna Kane-Potaka

Assistant Director General – External Relations

Joanna is an Australian national and has a Master of Science degree in Global Marketing.

Prior to joining ICRISAT she was Director, Communications and Marketing Information and Knowledge Group, International Water Management Institute, where she was responsible for science marketing, corporate communications, uptake approach of research findings, private industry fund raising, internal communications and information management. She was also Head, Information Management and Marketing, Bioversity International and Information and Communications Leader, WorldFish Center

She began her career as an agricultural economist with the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (BAE at the time) and later moved into market research in the agribusiness area of the Queensland Department of Primary Industries. Since then she has worked in a wide variety of marketing-related areas including strategic marketing, communications, fundraising, knowledge management, and uptake of scientific research.

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Dr Arabinda Kumar Padhee

Director, Country Relations and Business Affairs

Dr Arabinda Kumar Padhee is an Indian national. He has a Master’s degree in Agricultural Science from Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and a PhD from Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi. He also holds a Master’s degree in Public Administration (MPA) from University of Birmingham, UK. He has taken public policy courses at University of Toronto; Civil Services College, Singapore; and University of Cambridge at various points in his career.

Dr Padhee joined the Indian Administrative Services in 1996 and belongs to Odisha cadre. Among the various positions he has held are District Magistrate and Collector; Director, Agriculture and Food Production; Director, World Bank assisted Rural Livelihoods Project; Revenue Divisional Commissioner, Cuttack; Chief Administrator, Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri; Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Tourism and Culture Department, Odisha and Joint Secretary, Department of Fertilizers, Government of India, New Delhi. During his tenure with the Odisha Government, he was instrumental in drafting the Odisha State Agriculture Policy in 2008. He has also served as a member of the Technical Support Group of the erstwhile Planning Commission that prepared the District Agricultural Plan manual. Government of India appointed Dr Padhee as the first nodal officer to implement Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) in fertilizers in 2016.

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Angshu Sengupta

Director – Institutional Finance and Services

Mr. Angshu Sengupta was the Director of Finance, Risk & Legal at IRRI before he joined ICRISAT. In a career spanning 32 years, Mr. Sengupta worked 13 years in manufacturing, 15 in IT enabled services, two years in international consulting and two years in a non-profit research organization. He has shouldered the responsibilities of a CFO for about 8 years in his career. Mr. Sengupta has worked in GE Capital, GE Healthcare, GE Lighting, Vodafone, Countrywide Financial Corporation / Bank of America, Tata Consultancy Services, ACC Cements and Dunlop amongst other organizations.

Mr. Sengupta is a strategic business partner and out-of-the-box thinker, with successes in business transformation, process redesign for better control and productivity using Six Sigma tools, start-up operations, business/entity restructuring, P&L management, stakeholder management, cost control, risk management, compliance, margin improvement and working capital improvement. He is known for his deliberate and focused approach in leading global multi-cultural teams for reaching business goals.

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Anita Pirani

Director – Business Development

Ms Pirani has over 18 years of experience in international development leading teams in corporate business development strategy, business development practices, program design and implementation. Ms Pirani is adept at building and managing strategic partnerships with multiple stakeholders including governments, donors, NGOs, civil society, and private sector to work towards achieving a common objective. She has supported programs in over 21 countries and worked with over 10 NGOs develop long terms growth strategies. She has supported organizations to win grants ranging from US$ 500,000 to US$ 300 million from both global and bilateral programs.

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Ramon Peachey

Ramon Peachey

Director – Communications

Kunal Sarkar

Senior Manager Human Resources & Acting Director HR

Mr Kunal Sarkar is an accomplished professional with more than 17 years of experience across several verticals of strategic Human Resource Management — talent acquisition, compensation and benefits, performance management, talent management, ethics and safeguarding, employee engagement, global mobility and organization development — in telecom, pharmaceutical, IT and ITeS, and  agricultural research. Kunal has been in global leadership roles in multicultural and multidisciplinary work environments in Asia, ANZ and Africa, where he has successfully led HR initiatives to support cultural harmonization and drive change.

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Swati Jain

Head – Internal Audit

Amit Chakravarty

Chief of Staff

Dr Abhishek Rathore

Cluster Leader – Data Management and Analytical Support
Principal Scientist

Pradyut J Modi

Head – Information Systems Unit

Falalou Hamidou

Senior Scientist – Regional Genebank

Arindam Bose

Head – Purchase, Supplies and Disposal Services

A Vani

Senior Manager – Housing and Food Services

Surya Mani Tripathi

Legal Counsel

Surya Mani Tripathi,  is Legal Counsel at ICRISAT, Hyderabad.

He holds a law degree (LLB) from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur, carried out with a Microsoft IPR scholarship. He also holds a PhD, realized with a CSIR fellowship and an international fellowship provided by UNIDO and the Government of Italy.

He is a registered lawyer in India, and is engaged in the management of legal and regulatory issues pertaining to operations and research of ICRISAT, along with legislative advocacy and statutory compliances. His areas of work include legal drafting, legal risk management, international law, legal compliances and advisory, contracts and project negotiations, IP portfolio analysis and licensing, bio-prospecting, TK and biodiversity, and biotech research regulatory norms. As a techno-legal expert and solicitor, he is also facilitating the transfer of agricultural technologies and IPR commercialization. He has several publications, including book chapters.

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Arun Balamatti

Senior Manager – Visitor Services and Protocol Management

Ovais Hamid Peerzada

Manager – Genebank Quality Manager

Senthil Ramachandran

Manager – Germplasm Conservation

Muzamil Baig

Manager – Genebank Quality Manager

Kallakuri Sabita

Manager – Internal Audit

Fayaz Shaik

Manager – Internal Audit

S Vinaykanth

Resident Medical Doctor – Field Medical Unit

Anjaneya Sunil Kumar Pabbathi

Manager – Treasury & Operations

Appan Parida

Manager – MIS & Accounts

Indumathy Jonnalagadda

Manager – Projects & Grants

Lakshmi Pillay

Manager – Grants Management

Jayavardhan Kasha

Manager – Grants & Contracts

Roma Rani Das

Manager – Data Curator

Dr Kuldeep Singh

Cluster Leader – Genebank
Head (Consultant)

Jacqueline Hughes, Director General

Dr Jacqueline d’Arros Hughes

Director General

Dr Arvind Kumar

Deputy Director General – Research
Regional Director – Asia

Dr Kiran K Sharma

Director – CRP GLDC
Cluster Leader – Agri Business Innovation Platform

Dr Ramadjita Tabo

Regional Director and Country Representative Mali
West & Central Africa

Dr Rebbie Harawa

Regional Director and Country Representative Kenya
Eastern & Southern Africa

Dr Anthony Whitbread

Research Program Director – Resilient Farm and Food Systems

Dr Rajeev K Varshney

Research Program Director – Accelerated Crop Improvement

Dr Malick Niango Ba

Country Representative – Niger
Principal Scientist

Dr Hakeem Ajeigbe

Country Representative – Nigeria
Principal Scientist

Robert B Zougmore

Cluster Leader – Climate Adaptation and Mitigation
Principal Scientist

Dr Birhanu Zemadim Birhanu

Cluster Leader – Landscapes, Soil Fertility and Water Management
Senior Scientist

Dr D Hailemichael Shewayrga

Senior Scientist – Groundnut Breeding West & Central Africa Program

Dr Mathieu Ouedraogo

Senior Scientist – Agricultural Economics

Dr Felix Badolo

Senior Scientist – Agricultural Economics

Baloua Nebie

Senior Scientist-Sorghum Breeding

Jummai Othnielyila

Cluster Leader – Gender and Youth
Senior Scientist

Falalou Hamidou

Senior Scientist – Regional Genebank

Prakash I Gangashetty

Scientist – Pigeonpea Breeding

Bouba Traore

Scientist

Dr Ijantiku Ignatius Angarawai

Product Placement Lead

Folorunso Mathew Akinseye

Scientist – Agronomy & Agro Climatology

Dr Patrick Okori

Country Representative – Mozambique
Cluster Leader – Seed Systems
Principal Scientist

Martin Philani Moyo

Country Representative – Zimbabwe
Senior Scientist

Dr NVPR Ganga Rao

Product Placement Lead

Dr Henry Fred Ojulong

Cluster Leader – Precision Phenotyping for biotic, abiotic stresses & nutrition
Senior Scientist

Dr Eric Manyasa

Product Placement Lead

Dr Akpo Essegbemon

Scientist – Seed systems specialist – HOPE ll and TL llI

Hapson Mushoriwa

Cluster Leader – Rapid Generation Advancement
Principal Scientist

Dr Harish Gandhi

Cluster Leader – Crop Breeding
Principal Scientist

Dr Mamta Sharma

Cluster Leader – Precision Phenotyping
Principal Scientist

Dr Sreenath Dixit

Cluster Leader – ICRISAT Development Center
Principal Scientist

Dr Rajan Sharma

Cluster Leader – Crop Protection & Seed Health
Principal Scientist

Dr P Janila

Principal Scientist – Groundnut Breeding

Dr A Ashok Kumar

Principal Scientist – Product Placement Lead

Dr Sobhan Babu Sajja

Cluster Leader – Crop Improvement Operations Team (CIOT)
Senior Scientist

SK Gupta

Principal Scientist

S Srinivasan

Senior Scientist (Chickpea Breeding)

Dr Anupama J Hingane

Cluster Leader – Rapid Generation Advancement
Scientist

S Gopalakrishnan

Principal Scientist – Microbiology

Dr Hari Kishan Sudini

Cluster Leader – Science Quality & Strategy
Principal Scientist – Groundnut Pathology

Dr Raju Ghosh

Dr Jagdish Jaba

Dr G L Sawargaonkar

Senior Scientist (Agronomy)

Dr Girish Chander

Dr Mukund Dhavaji Patil

Senior Scientist (Soil Physics)

Dr K H Anantha

Senior Scientist-Natural Resource Management

Kaushal K Garg

Senior Scientist-Natural Resource Management

Dr Aviraj Datta

Scientist-Wastewater Management

Rajesh Nune

Scientist – Hydrology

Prasad Jairam Kamdi

Manager – Watersheds

Dr Pooja Bhatnagar-Mathur

Cluster Leader – Cell & Molecular Biology and Trait Engineering
Principal Scientist

Dr Damaris A Odeny

Cluster Leader – Genomics, pre-breeding & Bioinformatics
Principal Scientist

Dr Rakesh K Srivastava

Senior Scientist – Chickpea Genomics Genomics & Trait Discovery

Dr Santosh P Deshpande

Senior Scientist – Molecular Breeding

Dr Rachit Kumar Saxena

Senior Scientist – Applied Genomics

Dr Manish K Pandey

Senior Scientist – Groundnut Genomics

Ganesh Bapurao Patil

Special Project Scientist

Dr Manish Roorkiwal

Senior Scientist-Genomics and Molecular Breeding

Dr K Hima Bindu

Senior Scientist-Genomics and Molecular Breeding

Geoffrey Simiyu Muricho

Scientist – MLE Specialist

Annapurna Chitikineni

Cluster Leader – Sequencing and Genomics Services
Senior Manager

Prasad Bajaj

Manager-Computational Biology

Dr Michael Hauser

Research Program Director – Enabling Systems Transformation

Ram Kiran Dhulipala

Cluster Leader – Digital Agriculture
Senior Manager

Dr Murali Krishna Gumma

Cluster Leader – Geospatial and Big Data Sciences
Senior Scientist

Dr Andre F van Rooyen

Country Representative – Ethiopia
Principal Scientist

Dr Thomas Falk

Cluster Leader – Institutional Economist
Senior Scientist

Dr S Nedumaran

Senior Scientist – Economics

Dr D Kumara Charyulu

Senior Scientist, Agricultural Economics

Dr R Padmaja

Senior Scientist – Gender Research

Dr Sabine Homann Kee Tui

Senior Scientist – Social Scientist

Mequanint Biset Melesse

Cluster Leader – Technology Adoption and Impact Analysis
Senior Scientist

Dr Jana Kholova

Cluster Leader – Crop Physiology and Modelling
Senior Scientist

Sunita Choudhary

Scientist

Mohammed Irshad Ahmed

Manager – GIS, RS/GIS Lab

Saikat Datta Mazumdar

Chief Operating Officer – NutriPlus Knowledge Program

S Aravazhi

Chief Operating Officer – Innovation and Partnership Program

M Vetriventhan

Senior Scientist (Genetic Resources)

Dr Abhishek Rathore

Cluster Leader – Data Management and Analytical Support
Principal Scientist

Anita Pirani

Director – Business Development

Anitha Seetha

Senior Scientist – Nutrition

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