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About Us

The Tata-Cornell Institute for Agriculture and Nutrition (TCI) is a long-term research initiative focusing on the design and evaluation of innovative interventions linking agriculture, food systems, human nutrition, and poverty in India.

Our history

TCI was established with a $25 million USD endowment given to Cornell University from the Tata Education and Development Trust, a philanthropic branch of the Tata Group. The endowment was made possible by the vision of Mr. Ratan Tata, the former chairman of India’s Tata Group and a Cornell alumnus from the class of 1962.

Our locations

The main office of TCI is located on Cornell University’s campus in Ithaca, New York. We are a part of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and are hosted by the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management. We also have satellite offices in Mumbai and New Delhi, as well as multiple active field research locations across rural India.

Our leadership

Dr. Prabhu Pingali is the Founding Director of the Tata-Cornell Institute. He joined the institute and the Cornell University faculty 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, in June 2013.

Our story

Since 2013, under the direction of Dr. Pingali, TCI has experienced rapid growth in our projects, our team and our ambitions.  Starting as a staff of only three, our programs and on-the-ground research has sufficiently expanded to require personnel in our Ithaca, Mumbai and Delhi based offices.

We fund and advise over a dozen Ph.D. and Masters student researchers from disciplines across the Cornell campus. The majority of these TCI Scholars conduct intensive field work as an integral part their thesis research.  We believe that field research that addresses the problems of the rural poor is highly compatible with analytically rigorous research that is expected of Cornell graduate students.

In addition, we have regularly hosted visiting fellows and scholars from partner institutions in India and elsewhere.

December 2015 marked a major inflection point for TCI, when we were awarded a $13.4M BMGF grant to establish our flagship project Technical Assistance and Research for India Nutrition and Agriculture (TARINA). TARINA has greatly increased our footprint in India as well as strengthened our partnerships with the NGOs and policy/research institutes which form the TARINA Consortium.  This project will run through November 2019.  Learn more about TARINA.