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  • Smita Purushottam

    Senior Fellow
    +91 11 2671 7983

    Smita Purushottam joined the Institute of Defence Studies & Analyses (IDSA), New Delhi, on May 31, 2010 as Senior Fellow. She had previously served as Joint Secretary at the Foreign Service Institute of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), Joint Secretary in the Integrated Defence Staff Headquarters in the Ministry of Defence; Director/Under Secretary (East Europe/Soviet Union) and SAARC, and Under Secretary (Bhutan) in MEA. She served in India’s missions abroad as Deputy Chief of Mission in the Embassy of India in Berlin, Minister (Political) at the High Commission of India, London, Counsellor for economic and commercial affairs at the Indian Embassy in Beijing and at the Embassy in Brussels, and language-trainee cum information secretary at the Embassy of India, Moscow.

    She spent a year as Fellow at Harvard where she prepared a paper “Can India Overtake China?” (2001), in which she compared the two economies and their respective reform experiences; analysed the ongoing reforms in the Indian economy focusing on the telecom sector, aviation, privatization attempts and IT, and recommended building a strong manufacturing sector like China had. She has been appointed Ambassador to Venezuela.

    Ms. Purushottam earned a Master’s degree (1st class) in History from Delhi University in 1979. She taught History briefly at Jesus & Mary College, Delhi University. She won a Fellowship for a PhD in European History at Cornell University in the same year that she qualified for the Indian Foreign Service (1980), which she joined. She speaks Russian and limited French. At IDSA she is focusing on the Chinese innovation eco-system and on Eurasia.


    Publications at IDSA