Profile of Dr. M.S. Swaminathan

Swaminathan, Monkombu Sambasivam

Honorary Fellow – 2005

Agricultural Sciences & Forestry – Biodiversity-Ecodevelopment

DB: 07-08-1925

Birth place

Born in Kumbakonam, India


Educated in Madras and Cambridge Universities

Positions held 

Member Rajya Sabha, Govt. of India, UNESCO Cousteau Chair in Ecotechnology and Chairman, M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Director, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, 1961-72; Director General, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, 1972-79; Principal Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, Govt. of India, 1979-80; Member, Planning Commission and Chairman, Scientific Adv. Committee to Cabinet, Govt. of India, 1980-82; Chairman, UN Science Advisory Committee, 1980; Independent Chairman, FAO Council, 1981-85; Director General, IRRI, Los Banos, Philippines, 1982-88; President, International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (India), 1989-96, Chairman, National Commission on Farmers of India, 2004-06; President, Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs.

Research Area

Cytogenetics, Plant Breeding, agriculture, biodiversity and eco-development

Awards and fellowships

Several Awards including Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize, 1961; Ramon Magsaysay  Award for community Leadership, 1971; Albert Einstein World Science Award, 1986; First World Food Prize, 1987; UNESCO Gandhi Gold Medal, France, 1999; Franklin D Roosevelt Four Freedom Medal, Netherlands, 2000; Volvo and Tylor Prize for Environment; Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development, 2000; D.Sc.(h.c) from 58 Universities; Sahametrei Medal of Royal Govt. of Cambodia, 2007; Life Time Achievement Award of All Indian Management Association, 2007; Golden Peacock Life Time Achievement Award, 2007; Lal Bahadur Shastri National Award, 2007; Shining World Leadership Award, Singapore, 2007; ISCA Award, 2007-2008.
Indian Academy of Sciences, 1957; Indian National Science Academy, 1962; National Academy of Sciences, India, 1976; Royal Society, London, 1973; National Academy of Sciences, USA, 1977; Russian Academy of Agricultural Sciences, 1978; Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry, 1983; National Academy of Arts and Sciences, USA, 1984; Academy Naz. Delle Sciencz detta del XL, Italy, 1985; European Academy of Arts, Science and Humanities, 1988; American Association for the Advancement of Science, Founder Fellow, TWAS, 1983.


Chairman, M.S.Swaminathan Research Foundation, 3rd Cross Street, Taramani Institutional Area, Chennai – 600 113, Tamil Nadu;


‘Dharini’, 11, Rathna Nagar, Teynampet, Chennai – 600 018, Tamil Nadu;
[O: 044-22541229/ 22542790; 011-23731688; R: 044-24345312; F: 044-22541319;;;]