Strategic and Scientific Goals

Strategic Goals

The overall Strategic Goal of NEWS India-UK is to promote cooperation that demonstrates innovative ways to improve agricultural nitrogen (N) management, allowing increased and more resilient food production while reducing multiple pollution threats. The Centre will strengthen the world-leading position of both countries, including their input to the International Nitrogen Management System (INMS), a global science support process for international N policy being developed by UNEP, INI, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and others.

Five Strategic Objectives contribute to this goal:

  1. To establish an internationally leading program of nitrogen use efficiency (NUE) research that links the complementary strengths of the Indian and UK partners.

  2. To strengthen existing and build new collaborations between UK and Indian partners, including developing synergy with allied N research beyond the immediate focus.

  3. To make innovative links between N research domains, e.g., plant biology, biotechnology, agronomy, biogeochemistry, spatial data analysis, environmental modelling and policy analysis.

  4. To build a wider scientific basis for durable cooperation in agricultural N research that extends beyond the project, supported by use of fellowships, post-doctoral training, joint workshops and seminars.

  5. To use the research programme as a platform for stakeholder engagement to foster mutual learning and feedback thereby strengthening India-UK cooperation.

Scientific Goals

The overall Scientific Goal is to show how a combination of agronomic and biological improvements can contribute to raising NUE at field, farm and national scales and to demonstrate by how much these improvements will reduce N losses to the environment (including ammonia, NH3; nitric oxide, NO; nitrous oxide, N2O; dinitrogen gas, N2; nitrate, NO3-), thereby contributing to increased resilience of Indian agriculture. To achieve this, the Centre includes a transdisciplinary programme linking complementary science areas and scales.

Five Scientific Objectives contribute to this goal:

  1. To characterize and explain plant NUE differences, including establishment of a phenotypic ranking of Indian rice varieties for NUE supported by improved functional understanding of traits, comparing this with what can be achieved by a known genetic modification (GM) for improved plant NUE.

  2. To compare the effectiveness of agronomic and biological approaches to improving NUE, and to assess by how much combined approaches maximize overall crop performance.

  3. To quantify the relationships between NUE improvement and measured reduction in N losses, considering the different N forms and pathways of N loss.

  4. To test how better use of all available N resources can improve Farm NUE in rice-wheat rotations, including from organic manures, atmospheric N deposition and biological N fixation (BNF), and to explore options for overcoming the barriers to better manure recycling.

  5. To establish a national agricultural N budget for India, allowing scenarios of improved N management and resilience to be examined, and the associated environmental benefits to be quantified.

Go to top