I am a Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi. I am associated with the Foundation’s Global Governance, and Strategic Studies programmes. I am a researcher and commentator with broad interests in international relations, national security, and India’s strategic policies.
On the foreign-relations side, I work on geoeconomics, global governance and the future of the international order, and international political economy issues. On the strategic side, I work on national-security problems related to China, Pakistan, terrorism, Indian grand strategy as well as conceptual issues around intelligence analysis. I often try to derive policy insights from theories of international politics, and game theory. I also have professional experience as a policy economist.
My career trajectory thus far has spanned academia, the corporate world, and public policy. It has included past positions as the resident Economist at the JustJobs Network, as a Scientist at the TCS CTO Quantitative Finance Group, and as Visiting Faculty at the Institute of Mathematics and Applications, Bhubaneswar. (A relic of my short-lived attempt to play “Herr Professor” is my sufficiently-staid long-defunct website.)
I have written about geopolitics, security, and economic issues for various media outlets — including ones that people actually read. I have also participated in a variety of Track 1.5 and Track 2 diplomatic dialogues, and have provided (solicited) policy inputs to the Government of India.
I obtained my BA and MS degrees in mathematics from the University of Connecticut — the former as a University Scholar. The University afforded me great opportunities to indulge in a variety of intellectual adventures (see here and a followup).
Following that, I spent a year at Boston University as a Presidential Fellow, mostly reading EGA by the Charles or marveling the august institution that was (is?) the People’s Republik. Some research had to be done, however, so I moved to Bonn to carry out my doctoral research in algebraic geometry, quantum field theory and string theory at the Max Planck Institute for Mathematics, Bonn. My thesis supervisor was Professor Matilde Marcolli who taught me that all fields of intellectual inquiry are fair game for a mathematician. One of the few upshots of my time in Bonn was the rekindling of my love for Tintin.
I am a recipient of a Marie Curie Early Stage Research Fellowship from the European Commission, and a special Junior Research Scholarship from the Clay Mathematics Institute. I was also a Scientific Researcher at the Fields Institute, Toronto. All three were — as with most of my academic career — great opportunities for unencumbered travel. I suspect I will remember the people and places long after I have forgotten the papers I wrote or the seminars I gave.
Once a nerd, always a nerd. My free time often goes into playing with statistical and scientific computing (R, Python, and Octave, in particular). I am more than happy talking to people about all things computational — especially if someone pays me to do so.
I try to keep up with mathematical physics — being paranoid that I’d forget whatever I learnt in school. I am (extremely) slowly studying aspects of general relativity. I am also an amateur astronomer though Delhi’s pollution and air quality often plays spoilsport.