Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences
Shanghai Academy of Agricultural Sciences (SAAS) was established in 1960 and is mainly engaged in fundamental, applied, and high-tech research relating to the agricultural sciences, and in the application and exploitation of research output. During the past years, the Academy has developed into a regional organization focused on a comprehensive set of research domains related to agricultural science and technology, with facilities housing advanced equipment and staffed by highly qualified personnel, and with a strong commitment to the application and exploitation of research output.
Currently, SAAS is composed of 10 research units, namely the Crop Breeding and Cultivation Research Institute, Forest and Fruit Tree Research Institute, Protected Horticulture Research Institute, Research Institute of Edible Fungi, Animal and Veterinary Science Research Institute, Eco-environmental Protection Research Institute, Information of Agricultural Science and Technology Research Institute (Digital Agriculture Engineering and Technology Research Center), Biotechnology Research Institute, Institute for Agri-food Standards and Testing Technology and Shanghai Agricultural Biological Gene Center. There is also one integrated service center and one integrated experimental station within the Academy. In addition, 20 platforms for scientific and technological innovation and application at national or ministerial level and 15 technical platforms at municipal level are also deployed at SAAS, including the National Mushroom Engineering and Technology Research Center, the Shanghai Branch of National Center of Vegetable Variety Improvement, the Mushroom Branch of the National Agri-Product Processing Techniques Center, the Shanghai Branch of the New Plant Variety Testing Center (Ministry of Agriculture), the Standardized Propagation and Breeding Center for Quality Export Mushroom Strains (Ministry of Agriculture), the Supervision and Testing Center for the Ministry of Agriculture (Shanghai), the Key Laboratory of Fungal Resources Utilization of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Double-Low B. napus Breeder’s Seed Base of the Ministry of Agriculture, and the Hybrid Japonica Rice Breeder’s Seed Base of the Ministry of Agriculture. The library at SAAS maintains a collection of over 250,000 books in Chinese and foreign languages.
At present, SAAS has 1526 staff members, including 651 technical staffs. 16 scientists are designated as leading scientists at national or local level and 294 technical staffs have senior professional titles.505 technical staffs hold a doctoral or master degree and 71 experts/scientists are endowed with the State Council Special Subsidy. SAAS also has 16 leading scientists at national and regional level and one scientist acting as the chairman of the World Mushroom Biology and Mushroom Products. SAAS has one postdoctoral research center.
During the celebrated history of SAAS, SAAS has adhered to the principles of “research as the mainstay, promotion of business development, building the capacity of the talent pool, openness and collaboration”. Especially since the introduction of the open and reform policies under the leadership of the Shanghai Municipal Party Committee and Shanghai Municipal Government, the Academy’s tasks and work priorities have been subject to constant adjustment in line with the functions and orientations of agricultural development in Shanghai. The SAAS is focused on science and technology, and on providing services for rural areas. Following the efforts and hard work of generations of staff, several predominant research areas have been selected and prioritized, namely germplasm innovation and genetic improvement, protected horticulture, eco-agriculture, agricultural biosafety and standardization, maintenance of post-harvest freshness and processing of agri-products, the application of high-tech in agriculture, and studies on urban agriculture. SAAS has engaged in exchanges and collaborative research in science and technology with partners in over 30 countries and regions.
Over nearly 60 years, SAAS has realized more than 1800 scientific research achievements and has received over 380 awards/prizes at municipal/ministerial level. Among the latter, 30 were national prizes for progress or invention in science and technology; and 32 were first prizes for progress in science and technology awarded by the ministries or by Shanghai Municipal Government. Over 930 authorized patents, new variety rights, and varieties approved have been obtained (55 varieties approved at national level). Over 6800 papers and over 300 monographs and compilations have been published.
During the past years, the Academy’s achievements obtained through innovation in science and technology have been applied to agricultural production, providing services to the development of rural economy on all fronts. It has established effective mechanisms for bringing agricultural science and technology to rural areas, enhanced the effects of linking science and technology with targeted rural areas, and created joint agricultural science and technology demonstration bases. Over 150 bases for demonstrating new varieties and techniques have been set up both in Shanghai suburban area and other parts of China, covering 98 counties in 21 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions. These have been highly effective in accelerating the pace at which the results of agricultural scientific and technological research have been applied and exploited. Therefore, not only does the SAAS provide important scientific and technological support for the development of agriculture in Shanghai, but it also makes important contributions to the progress and modernization of agriculture throughout China.
The SAAS aims at intensifying its focus on scientific and technological innovation in agriculture and the exploitation and application of research results in order to ensure the healthy economic development of Shanghai and the harmonious progress of the city’s society, we will aspire to build the SAAS into the top-level research organization in China.