The library functions with a vision of providing physical and intellectual access to information, consistent with the present and anticipated educational and research functions of the Foundation. The library is a home for books written by around 600 authors. It has a large print collection of over 19,586 books, journals, theses, and reports as well as over 4,500 issues of periodicals. It also has regular subscriptions to high-impact science journals such as Nature, Scientific America, Science, Economic and Political Weekly (EPW), and New Scientist.
Every now and then, research scholars working on agricultural innovations, biodiversity, ecotechnology and other subjects interlinked to the MSSRF’s programmes visit the library. The library also possesses books written by the founder Professor M S Swaminathan. It is a haven for books received by Prof M S Swaminathan as gifts from many scholars.
One of the prized possessions of the library is the Blue Planet Prize received by MSSRF in 1996 from the Asahi Glass Foundation, Japan.
The impact created by the library on the science community encouraged the Foundation to start branch libraries in a few villages in Pondicherry under the name of M.S Swaminathan Research Library. Students in rural communities no longer have to go to towns and cities to access information.
“This is one place to get everything that is needed for research,” said Sumathi, a student at Loyola College, who is researching biodiversity.
Children who take part in Every Child A Scientist programme rely on the books available in the library to improve their knowledge of science. The library also facilitates the students to use the computers to read many books online.
Even though the footfall to the library decreased after COVID-19, the Foundation is working on revamping it. “Just by checking the keywords on the system, a student would be able to locate the book rather than searching physically,” said Subhranshu Bhusan Sahoo, librarian, MSSRF.
To read the list of publications on various topics including climate change strategies and sustainable agriculture, click here.
M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) established in 1988 is a not-for-profit trust. MSSRF was envisioned and founded by Professor M S Swaminathan, agriculture scientist with proceeds from the First World Food Prize that he received in 1987.