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The Tata-Cornell Institute for Agriculture and Nutrition TCI is a long-term Cornell University research initiative focusing on interventions that link agriculture to nutrition, while applying a food systems approach to tackle chronic and micronutrient malnutrition and address rural poverty in India. 2018 marks the five-year anniversary of TCI, which was established with an endowment from the Tata Education and Development Trust by Mr. Ratan Tata ’62, the chairman emeritus of Tata Group. Tata-Cornell uniquely combines field-based projects, academic research, and policy analysis to generate and share knowledge relevant to policymakers, research institutions, and development agencies.
Since 2013, under Founding Director Professor Prabhu Pingali, TCI has experienced rapid growth in its projects, team and ambitions. The programs and on-the-ground research now employ personnel in Ithaca, Mumbai, Delhi, and multiple field locations across 6 states in India. TCI funds and advises some 15 Cornell Ph.D. and Masters student researchers from a wide variety of disciplines across the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences CALS.
The majority of TCI Scholars conduct intensive field work as an integral part their thesis research. It is TCI’s belief that field research that addresses the problems of the rural poor is highly compatible with the analytically rigorous research that is expected of Cornell graduate students. As a multidisciplinary, applied research team consisting of economists nutritionists food scientists plant and soil scientists animal scientists development sociologists engineers and more, TCI is working to create, test, and scale up sustainable and effective solutions for reducing poverty and improving malnutrition and livelihoods in rural India. Thus, TCI continues the CALS tradition of international research and education, service, and policy advising that is so important to the Cornell legacy.