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Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan

Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan

Dr. Rajeswari (Raji) Pillai Rajagopalan is the Director of the Centre for Security, Strategy & Technology (CSST) at the Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi. 

Dr. Rajagopalan was the Technical Advisor to the United Nations Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) on Prevention of Arms Race in Outer Space (PAROS) (July 2018-July 2019). She was also a Non-Resident Indo-Pacific Fellow at the Perth USAsia Centre from April-December 2020. As a senior Asia defense writer for The Diplomat, she writes a weekly column on Asian strategic issues.  

Dr. Rajagopalan joined ORF after a five-year stint at the National Security Council Secretariat (2003-2007), Government of India, where she was an Assistant Director. Prior to joining the NSCS, she was Research Officer at the Institute of Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi.  She was also a Visiting Professor at the Graduate Institute of International Politics, National Chung Hsing University, Taiwan in 2012.  

Dr. Rajagopalan has authored or edited nine books including Global Nuclear Security: Moving Beyond the NSS (2018), Space Policy 2.0 (2017), Nuclear Security in India (2015), Clashing Titans: Military Strategy and Insecurity among Asian Great Powers (2012), The Dragon’s Fire: Chinese Military Strategy and Its Implications for Asia (2009).  She has published research essays in edited volumes, and in peer reviewed journals such as India Review, Strategic Studies Quarterly, Air and Space Power Journal, International Journal of Nuclear Law and Strategic Analysis.  She has also contributed essays to newspapers such as The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Times of India, and The Economic Times.  She has been invited to speak at international fora including the United Nations Disarmament Forum (New York), the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) (Vienna), Conference on Disarmament (Geneva), ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and the European Union.  

Dr. Rajagopalan tweets @raji143.

Posts by Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
September 22, 2023

India, Singapore Kick off SIMBEX Military Exercise

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
The naval drill, now in its 30th edition, has grown more complex and robust as India and Singapore's shared concerns about China deepen.

September 19, 2023

The Geopolitics of the New India-Middle East-Europe Corridor

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
IMEC is touted as a counter to China’s BRI, but the scale and scope of the latter initiative is much greater.
September 11, 2023

India-US Space Cooperation Gets a New Fillip

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
The latest Biden-Modi summit followed up on major space cooperation initiatives announced during Modi's state visit in June.

September 07, 2023

Defining ‘Responsible Behavior’ in Space Is a Growing Necessity

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
Amid worsening geopolitical dynamics and contested great power relations, even obvious good behavior needs to be spelled out clearly. 

August 28, 2023

Growth and Incoherence: BRICS 2023 Summit in South Africa

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
BRICS eyes expansion, but without a coherent agenda. Meanwhile, rhetoric about respect for international law sours beside Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

August 21, 2023

Malabar Exercise Brings Quad Navies Together in Australia

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
After returning to the long-running exercise in 2020, Australia played host to Malabar 2023.
August 12, 2023

Why Did India Merely Observe Exercise Talisman Sabre 2023?

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
Despite earlier reports that India would actually participate in the Australia-U.S. led military exercise, New Delhi remained an observer of the latest iteration.

August 04, 2023

Should We Expect a Thaw in China-India Relations Soon? 

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
With Xi possibly visiting India for the G-20 Summit in September, some hope for a tempering of tensions. But that might just be wishful thinking. 

August 01, 2023

Sri Lankan President Visits India, Highlights Close Relations

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
Last year’s economic crisis crippled the island nation, but it also provided India an opening to offset some of the inroads that China has made in Sri Lanka.

July 26, 2023

Modi’s France Visit Strengthens Defense Cooperation 

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
New Delhi has ambitious plans to bolster its armed forces with French procurements, but it is unclear how close these deals are to happening.

July 15, 2023

With Chandrayaan-3 Launch, India Heads for the Moon

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
The Chandrayaan missions represent a major triumph for India and its space agency. 
June 12, 2023

Can Germany Help India Overcome Its Submarine Troubles?

By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan
A new submarine deal could bring back Germany as a major player in the Indian defense sector.

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