Waite Agricultural Research Institute
1924-1991 - Waite Agricultural Research Institute
In October 1913 Peter Waite wrote to the Premier of South Australia, Hon. A. H. Peake, and the Chancellor of the University of Adelaide, the Rt. Hon. Sir Samuel Way, informing them of his intent to bequeath the Urrbrae property of 54 hectares to the University. The eastern half was to be used for scientific studies related to agriculture and the western half as a public park. He also intended handing over 45 hectares adjoining Urrbrae to the Government of South Australia for the purpose of establishing an agricultural high school.
Following the deaths of Peter and his wife Matilda in 1922, the estate was handed over to the University which established the Waite Agricultural Research Institute (WARI) in 1924 on the site. The land has remained unsubdivided since 1839.
Waite's objective was "to advance the cause of education and more especially to promote the teaching and study of Agriculture and Forestry and allied subjects" through his gift.
In 1927 Sir John Melrose gave 10,000 pounds to the University; and this gift, when added to grants made by the Empire Marketing Board, and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, provided the first group of permanent laboratory buildings.
The Melrose Wing had just been formally opened when, in 1929, the family of the late John Darling gave 10,000 pounds for a soil research laboratory. A third benefaction came from the family of Ranson Mortlock, and the Mortlock Wing was officially open in 1938.
Professor Arnold Richardson was appointed foundation professor of agriculture and was the first director of WARI from 1924 until 1938.
Following the Second World War further additions to the Waite Building were made possible by grants from the State and Commonwealth Governments. At the end of 1972 the total floor area was approaching 100,000 square feet; and in addition there were many glasshouses, field laboratories, workshops and farm buildings. 
Although the chief objective of the Institute was to conduct research on plant and soil problems, it also provided an advisory service to the Department of Agriculture in plant pathology and entomology and gave specialised courses of instruction for the agricultural degrees in the University of Adelaide. 
1991-2010 Faculty of Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences
In 1991, along with Roseworthy Agricultural College, it became a campus of Adelaide University's Faculty of Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences and its independent identity was no longer recognised in terms of Annual Reports and other institutional output.
2010 -- Waite Research Institute
In late 2010 the Waite Research Institute (WRI) was re-established and re-launched. 
The WRI's fundamental and applied research based at The University of Adelaide’s North Terrace, Roseworthy and Waite campuses underpins innovation in Australia’s agricultural industries.
It facilitates further development of the world-class capability and technologies at the Waite precinct. The WRI keeps alive the vision of Peter Waite in leading and providing support for collaborative initiatives that bring about step changes in Australian agricultural science and practice.
The WRI’s broad vision is to drive the innovation to secure a sustainable future for Agriculture—by creating high-quality, nutritious and climate-resilient products. 
The WRI includes the Waite Arboretum, Urrbrae House Historic Precinct and Waite Conservation Reserve as well as the broader Waite Research Precinct, which is Australia's leading research, education and commercialisation cluster. The precinct has the largest concentration of expertise in the southern hemisphere in the areas of plant biotechnology, cereal breeding, sustainable agriculture, wine and horticulture and land management. 
The Waite Arboretum is a living tree museum, held on trust and in perpetuity as a park or garden for the enjoyment of the public. Planting of trees from around the world began in 1928. The Arboretum occupies 28 hectares and contains about 2,400 specimens representing more than 1,037 taxa, all growing under natural annual rainfall of 622 mm. 
Urrbrae House was completed in 1891 as the home of Peter and Matilda Waite. It was the first home in Adelaide to have electric lights and also a refrigeration system installed in 1895.
From 1924 until the end of 1973 Urrbrae House was the residence of Directors of the Waite Agricultural Research Institute and their families. Through the 1970s and 1980s Urrbrae House was the home of the Waite Staff Club and the Waite Refectory/Cafeteria. During the 1990s Urrbrae House and its gardens underwent a major restoration. 
Waite Conservation Reserve
The Waite Conservation Reserve in the Adelaide Hills face area, comprises 121 hectares, of which 110 hectares are under Heritage Agreement. It has many walking trails and tracks and boasts a fantastic view over the Waite Campus and the city of Adelaide.
Home to hundreds of species of native plants as well as kangaroos, koalas and echidnas, the Reserve is a valuable asset to the University of Adelaide and the people of South Australia and the best surviving example of Grey Box Grassy Woodland. 
- Professor Arnold Edwin Victor Richardson, DSc (Melb), MA, 1924-1938
- Professor James Arthur Prescott, CBE, DSc, FRAI, FRS, FAA, 1938-1955
- Dr James Melville, CMG, MSc (NZ), PhD (Lond.), DUniv (Adel), 1956-1973, (Emeritus Professor 1974)
- Professor James Patrick Quirk, AO, BScAgr (Syd), PhD, DSc (Lond), Hon DAgrSc (Louvain), FAIAS, FRACI, FANZAAS, FTS, FAA, 1974-1989, (Emeritus Professor 1990)
- Professor Harold William Woolhouse, BSc (Hons) (Reading), PhD, Hon DSc (East Anglia) 1990-1996
- Professor John Malcolm Oades, AM, BSc (Hons), PhD (Leeds), DUniv (Adel), DSc (Leeds) 1996-2001 (Emeritus Professor 2002)
- Professor Geoffrey Bruce Fincher, BAgSc, PhD (Melb), 2003-2009 (Emeritus Professor 2015)
- Professor Roger Leigh, BSc, MA (Camb), PhD (Wales), CBiol, FIBiol, 2010-2012 (Emeritus Professor 2014)
- Professor Michael James Wilkinson, BSc (Hons), PhD (Leic), 2013-2014
- Emeritus Professor Mike Keller, 2015-2017
- A/Professor Chris Ford, Interime Director, 2018
- Professor Matthew Gilliham, 2019 --
1. https://www.thewaite.org/history/ - Accessed 27 December 2020.
2. The University of Adelaide, 1874-1974: A Statement of the Case for Supporting the University's Centenary Appeal. 1972.
3. Nature, 18 August 1934, p. 258. Nature Publishing Group.
3. University of Adelaide Archives Provenance Record UAR-0226.
4. https://www.thewaite.org/waite-partners/waite-research-institute/ - Accessed 27 December 2020.
5. University of Adelaide Archives Provenance Record UAR-0226.
6. https://www.thewaite.org/history/ - Accessed 27 December 2020.
Succeeding OrganisationWaite Research Institute