July 1, 2019

WASHINGTON DC—The Atlantic Council this week named Irfan Nooruddin, Georgetown University professor and director of the school’s India Initiative, as the new head of its South Asia Center.

“In Irfan, we are adding to our leadership team a proven institution-builder and an impressive, widely published intellect to the Council,” said Frederick Kempe, Atlantic Council President and CEO. “He combines rigorous scholarship with a policy entrepreneur’s vision on how to address a region that is at the same time one of the most promising and most perilous in the world.”

Said Nooruddin, “South Asia is rich with innovative economies, diverse cultures, and complex politics, making it a region of critical importance to American strategic and commercial interests in the twenty-first century. The Atlantic Council can play an important role in helping the United States forge a productive relationship with South Asia, and I am proud to help do so as the new director of its South Asia Center.”

He will remain a professor at Georgetown University and continue to direct its India Initiative, a university-wide project that advances research and teaching around India and its role in world affairs and creates a platform for high-level dialogue among American and Indian leaders from government, business, civil society, and the academy.   

Prior to his time at Georgetown, Nooruddin was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC, and a team member with Lokniti: Programme on Comparative Democracy at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi. He is the author of Elections in Hard Times: Building Stronger Democracies in the 21st Century (with T.E. Flores, Cambridge, 2016) and Coalition Politics and Economic Development: Credibility and the Strength of Weak Governments (Cambridge, 2011). Nooruddin holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Michigan, and a BA in Economics and International Studies from Ohio Wesleyan University.

Nooruddin fills the position vacated earlier this year by Bharath Gopalaswamy, who will remain active with the Atlantic Council as a non-resident senior fellow.

The South Asia Center is the Atlantic Council's focal point for work on greater South Asia. Through partnerships with key institutions in the region, the Atlantic Council facilitates dialogue among decision-makers in South Asia, the United States and Europe with the aiming of “waging peace” and securing democracy and prosperity in the region. These deliberations cover internal and external security, governance, trade, economic development, education, climate sustainability and resilience, and other issues. The Center is committed to working with stakeholders from South Asia in addition to partners and experts in the United States and Europe, to offer comprehensive analyses and practicable recommendations for policymakers.

For more information or to request an interview with Irfan Nooruddin, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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