Thailand is one of the agricultural powerhouses of Southeast Asia, with its considerable crop and livestock production. It figures among the leading exporters of several major agricultural products, notably natural rubber, but also rice and poultry, etc. Agricultural development has been accompanied with the creation of a set of agrifood industries, which today are a powerful driving force for Thai agriculture. Thailand is an emerging country, with upper middle economy status, and aspires to join the developed economies. Its investment in research and education, and the presence in Bangkok of regional offices of international agencies (FAO, WOAH, ESCAP, etc.) have led CIRAD to carry out considerable research activities for over thirty years, based on high-level institutional and scientific partnerships.
Fish sellers, Chang Rai market, Golden Triangle. © G. Cros, CIRAD
Fish sellers, Chang Rai market, Golden Triangle. © G. Cros, CIRAD

Fish sellers, Chang Rai market, Golden Triangle. © G. Cros, CIRAD

Main research areas

The main research topics currently being addressed combine the priorities of the Thai government with those of CIRAD.

  • Understanding the relations existing between agriculture and the environment, and between human societies and nature, for the sustainable management of rural areas. This mostly covers the field of rubber growing.
  • Preparing for and managing infectious health risks taking an integrated approach (One Health).
  • Inventing ecologically intensive agriculture to feed people.

Key figures

  • 4 expatriate researchers
  • 9 current projects
  • 35 missions per year
  • 5 PhD students supervised

Franco-Thai InterRisk international Master’s degree 

Assessment and management of health risks at the human-animal-ecosystem interface

This Master’s degree has been developed as part of the One Health approach by CIRAD in conjunction with Kasetsart University (Thailand) and the University of Toulouse. Forty students have been trained since 2016 and many now hold positions in international organizations (ILRI, FAO, WOAH), or are in the process of obtaining their PhD (City University Hong Kong, University of Montpellier, Kasetsart University).  With backing from MUSE (Montpellier University of Excellence), this Master’s programme should soon evolve and potentially involve other partners outside Southeast Asia, such as École Inter-États des Sciences et Médecine Vétérinaires (Inter-State School for Veterinary Sciences and Medicine) in Dakar at Cheikh Anta Diop University (Senegal).

Find out more: InterRisk Master’s website

The natural rubber value chain in Southeast Asia

Preparedness for the possible effects of climate change and agricultural labour shortages in the Southeast Asian rubber sector

The FORSEA project is being implemented in cooperation with a consortium of partners in Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.

Cooperation and partnership

Platforms in partnership

Main partners

  • Kasetsart University (KU) 
  • The Thailand International Cooperation Agency (TICA)
  • Prince of Songkla University (PSU)
  • Rubber Research Institute of Thailand (RRIT)
  • Rubber Authority of Thailand (RAoT)
  • Michelin Thailand
  • World Organisation of Animal Health (OMSA/WOAH, funded as OIE) and the SubRegional Representation for South-East Asia (SRR-SEA) in Bangkok
  • FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific

CIRAD is also working with

  • The AIT, Asian Institute of Technology
  • The Department of Livestock Development (DLD, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives)
  • The National Science and Technology Development Agency (NSTDA)
  • Chulalongkorn university
  • Khon Kaen university
  • Mahidol university