Agreement Type

Start Date


Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)


Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences (ALES)

The M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) was established in 1988 as a not-for-profit trust. MSSRF was envisioned and founded by Professor M S Swaminathan with proceeds from the First World Food Prize that he received in 1987. The Foundation aims to accelerate use of modern science and technology for agricultural and rural development to improve lives and livelihoods of communities. MSSRF follows a pro-poor, pro-women and pro-nature approach and applies appropriate science and technology options to address practical problems faced by rural populations in agriculture, food and nutrition.These efforts have been undertaken in a participatory manner and in partnership with other knowledge-based institutions, public and private sector organisations and local communities.

From a small beginning, across the years, the Foundation has made its impact felt in various dimensions making a difference to the lives of over 600,000 farm families impacting livelihood of 100,000 farmers and fisherfolk every day with influence that spreads across 18 countries.

MSSRF is carrying out research and development in the following major thematic areas:

  • Coastal Systems Research
  • Climate Change
  • Biodiversity
  • Biotechnology
  • Ecotechnology
  • Food Security
  • Information, Education and Communication
  • Gender and Grass Root Institutions

UAlberta Connections
In a collaborative project with the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF), a team of researchers from the Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sciences (ALES) and the Dept. of Biological Sciences engaged in a project to understand issues of poverty and lack of adequate, nutritious food in India. Their project was jointly funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) (now under Global Affairs Canada) and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) through their Canadian International Food Security Fund (CIFSRF). The $5 million project lasted from 2011-2014 and aimed to identify ways and means to lift people in three regions of India out of poverty and ensure that they had access to adequate and nutritious food. Initiatives focused on improving agricultural productivity through proper selection of crop/plant varieties, better agronomic practices, income diversification opportunities, empowerment of women, and the establishment of village resource centres. The project leads were Professors Nat Kav and Brent Swallow.

Dr. MS Swaminathan, a renowned expert in sustainable agriculture, received an honorary doctorate and delivered the Bentley lecture at UAlberta in October 2010.