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Mission

The International Cotton Research Center is committed to providing comprehensive, state-of-the-art, multidisciplinary and systems-oriented cotton research and education programs focusing on all aspects of the modern cotton industry, including genomics, genetics, production, field to fabric processing, development of high value-added bio-products from fibers and seed, marketing, and international trade.

Vision

The International Cotton Research Center will be recognized internationally as the premier center of excellence in all aspects of cotton research, outreach and education. The Center’s reputation will be based upon excellence in learning, discovery and application of knowledge, and outreach regarding current and emerging aspects of the cotton industry.

Goals

The overall goal for the International Cotton Research Center is to gain novel knowledge and to develop new technologies for cotton, leading to intellectual property (patents, know-how, germplasm release, etc.) and innovative production and marketing practices. The research will address all aspects of cotton improvement, production, processing (from genes to jeans), marketing, and international trade, thereby resulting in increased profitability and sustainability for the Texas cotton industry. Possible research goals for the Center include:

  • Mitigating the impact of plant stress (water, heat, insects, weeds, diseases) on yield and quality
  • Developing innovative genetic improvement tools through conventional breeding, molecular breeding, and structural and functional genomics
  • Increasing knowledge and understanding of the cotton genome (genome sequencing, etc.) and developing new germplasm
  • Understanding the impact of crop termination, harvesting, and ginning methods on cotton fiber quality
  • Developing improved crop management practices (pre- and post-harvest) in order to optimize producer revenue (yield and quality)
  • Improving the logistics (storage, transportation, etc.) from the gin to the textile mill
  • Elucidating the impact of micro- and macro-structure of the cotton fibers on their chemical and physical properties
  • Elucidating the impact of the chemical and physical properties of cotton fibers on the processability of the raw material
  • Developing new usages for the biopolymers extracted from cotton (cellulose, proteins, and fatty acids) such as bioplastics, functionalized substrates, filtration, etc.
  • Analyzing the feasibility and market impact of new technologies, the development of effective production, the marketing of risk management methodologies, and understanding market behavior and factors related to international competitiveness

Organization

The Co-Directors and the Associate Director coordinate, promote, assist, and perform administrative functions related to the mission of the Center. The faculty associates conducting cotton research and outreach activities and the Department Chairs play a pivotal role in assisting the functioning of the Center.

The Advisory Board is composed of representatives of each segment constituting the center. The Advisory Board members meet periodically with representatives of the Center (the Dean, Co-Directors, Associate Director, Department Chairs, faculty associates) to review activities in which the Center is engaged, provide advice, assist with strategic planning, and offer input regarding administration of funds. Board members serve three-year terms.