Dr. A. Sivathanu Pillai is currently Honorary Distinguished Professor at ISRO. Prior to this, he was a Distinguished Scientist and Chief Controller, R&D, DRDO and also the CEO & MD of BrahMos Aerospace. Dr. Pillai has four decades of experience in ISRO and DRDO working under the visionary leaderships of Dr. Vikram Sarabhai, Prof. Satish Dhawan and Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. Of particular interest is his contribution to the successful development of SLV 3 as a core team member and the evolution of PSLV configuration. Dr. Pillai has also authored several books including The Path Unexplored, Ocean Warfare, Thoughts for Change-We Can Do It among others. For his distinguished service, he was awarded Padma Bhushan in 2013 by the Government of India and the Order of Friendship by the President of Russia in 2014.
Lt. Gen. Amit Sharma a Cavalry officer with forty years service in the army is a Former C-in-C of Strategic Forces Command. He has served in command, staff and instructional appointments in all parts of the country and abroad.
Among the pioneers who raised Headquarters Integrated Defence Staff, he was instrumental in making the first LTIPP of the three services. He was also the Nodal officer in the then nascent Defence Acquisition Council Secretariat. As the Defence Attache in France, he was responsible for Defence Cooperation and Diplomacy with France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Luxembourg.
He has commanded an Armoured Regiment, an Independent Armoured Brigade, an Infantry Division and The Desert Strike Corps. He was finally the Commander in Chief of the Strategic Forces Command, i.e. the Nuclear Forces of India. He is presently a Scientific Consultant on Strategic Issues with the Government of India. He is also the President of The Indian Cavalry Association.
Dr. Ajey Lele is working as a Senior Fellow with the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), New Delhi, India. He started his professional career with Indian Air Force and took premature retirement to join the field of academics. He holds a rank of Group Captain. His academic qualifications include a Masters in Physics and a Ph.D. in International Relations. His areas of research interests include issues related to Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), Strategic Technologies and Space Security. He has various publications to his name and some of his book publications include Strategic Technologies for the Military (Sage, 2009), Asian Space Race: Rhetoric or Reality? (Springer, 2013) and Mission Mars: India’s Quest for the Red Planet (Springer, 2014).
Mr. Alok Anil’s stint with 3D printing started in 2008 as he was looking for custom fit rocket parts for the university’s rocket team project, which was funded by GE. He has utilised the power of 3D printing to manufacture complex aerospace and automotive prototypes for research purposes. He has previously published his work at DRDO's SAROD conference. Alok is now working towards bringing his expertise in the field of 3D Printing and Manufacturing, to help Next Big Innovation Labs (NBIL) develop India’s first commercial 3D Bioprinter. Alok is a member of World Economic Forum's 3D Printing Expert Network and Global Shapers community and is actively involved in a mission to bring new age technology adoption into the healthcare and aerospace sectors.
Ms. Alisha Contractor is a Systems Engineer at Asteria Aerospace, a UAV manufacturing company based out of Bangalore. She holds Honours degree in Aerospace Engineering with Astronautics from Kingston University and post grad research in Space Systems Engineering from University of Glasgow. During her time at Kingston University, she worked on Attitude determination of CubeSats through Image Analysis. While at University of Glasgow she conducted research on Distributed Imaging platform for Earth Observing CubeSat constellation. She mentored group of students for a project on High Elevation Remote Sensing Messenger, which was later successfully tested by launching it in sounding rocket. She also researched on Sustainability and reliability of cost effective method for manufacturing CubeSats by 3D printing. She has previous experiences in Image processing and analysis of Satellite & UAV Imagery for precision agriculture and other verticals.
Mr. Anirudh Rastogi is Managing Partner, Corporate Law and Investments at TRA Law. He specialises in general corporate legal practice encompassing foreign investments, mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, bank financings and other kinds of commercial matters. He regularly advises growth stage startups on contractual and legal aspects of day to day commercial and business operations. Apart from helping businesses and entrepreneurs efficiently contract with their customers and counterparts, he also advises on dispute management and resolution. Anirudh has spent most of his career in the Singapore office of O’Melveny & Myers, a leading multinational law firm, advising clients on their India investment and divestment strategies. Prior to that, he worked with Nishith Desai Associates in Mumbai.
Dr. Anuradha Saibaba is the Head of the International Humanitarian Law Department at the International Committee of the Red Cross, Regional Delegation for India, Nepal, Bhutan & Maldives. Her work encompasses dissemination, trainings on humanitarian law to a broad range of stakeholders including the academia, national authorities, armed forces and peacekeepers etc. She spearheads programmes on the academic file across the country and in South Asia and beyond.
Prior to joining the ICRC in 2013, Dr. Saibaba served as an Assistant Professor of law at India’s premier law university - The National law School of India University, Bengaluru. She has served as a guest faculty at several leading law schools in the country. She has been a recipient of several fellowships to pursue research and teaching at National University of Singapore, the Hague Academy of International Law etc. Dr. Saibaba has authored several books and her articles have featured in numerous peer reviewed national and international journals.
She holds a doctorate in juvenile justice law and has completed her Masters in International Human Rights Law from Queens University of Belfast, Northern Ireland under the Chevening Fellowship programme.
Dr. Archna Negi is Associate Professor at the Centre for International Politics, Organization and Disarmament of the School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). She teaches several courses at the M.Phil., M.A. and B.A. levels relating to international negotiations, international organization and world politics. Her research interests include international law, diplomacy and organization, with a special focus on international trade and environment. Outside of JNU, she teaches as a guest faculty at several reputed institutions. Dr. Negi holds a Masters Degree in Political Science and a Ph.D. Degree in International Law. She has presented papers in various national and international conferences and authored several publications.
Mr. Ashok Venkateshmurthy is an Advocate and Partner of Factum Law at its Bangalore office. He represents clients in technology, telecommunications and broadcasting, space and aerospace, among other sectors in domestic and international disputes. He also advises businesses in the commercial space sector in the U.S.A., U.K., India and the U.A.E in negotiating launch services contracts, investment funding, Intellectual Property Protection and Enforcement, Corporate Governance, telecommunications and space law, taxation and data privacy.
In his career spanning six years, Ashok has been part of key thought leadership initiatives in the field of satellite communication applications particularly in the field of Inflight Entertainment and Connectivity and identifying policy goals for enabling an economy for commercial space activities in India. To this end, Ashok has authored and published papers and articles on the legal framework for commercial space activities in domestic and international publications. He has also delivered talks at premiere technology, management and law schools in India on emerging issues in technology and space law.
Dr. B. N. Suresh is a Honorary Distinguished Professor at Indian Space Research organisation (ISRO). He was a renowned aerospace engineer with accomplishments in space technology in the arena of launch vehicle design, aerospace navigation, control and actuation systems, vehicle electronics, modelling and simulation. During his career at ISRO spanning about four decades, he has held the post of Director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) and was also the founding Director of the prestigious Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST).
He is a fellow of several professional bodies like Indian National Academy of Engineering, Astronautical Society of India, Aeronautical Society of India as also International Academy of Astronautics. He also has presided as Head of the Indian delegation for the United Nations Committee on Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. He was also selected to chair the prestigious United Nations Scientific and Technical subcommittee dealing with Peaceful Use of Outer Space in the year 2006.
Dr. Suresh was awarded ‘Dr. Biren Roy Space Science Design Award’ from Aeronautical Society of India in 1993, ‘Agni Award’ for excellence in self reliance from DRDO in 1999, ‘ASI Award’ for contribution to rocket and related technologies from Astronautical Society of India in 2000, ‘Distinguished Alumni Award’ from IIT Chennai in 2004 and ‘Technical Excellence Award’ by Lions International in 2006. In addition, he was awarded Padma Shri in 2002. He has published more than 45 technical papers in national and international symposiums, conferences and journals and guided more than 500 technical reports in the area of launch vehicle design, mission, avionics and other associated areas.
Dr. Bidushi Bhattacharya is a rocket scientist and entrepreneur with more than 28 years experience in spacecraft development and operations, academic administration, and scientific research. She has founded a number of space-related companies in Singapore including Astropreneurs HUB, Southeast Asia’s first space technology incubator, and Bhattacharya Space Enterprises, a startup dedicated to space-related education and training. Bidushi has worked on the Hubble Space Telescope, Mars Rover Program, and other planetary spacecraft and space-based observatories. She has also established science research development programs at colleges in the US.
Brigadier Deepak Sharma, DACIDS (ISC) is heading the Space Dte at HQ IDS. He was commissioned in Corps of Signals in 1984. He has an M. Tech degree in Communications from IIT, Kanpur and has also done Technical Staff Course. He commanded Corps Engineering Signals Regiment in Counter Insurgency Environment at Tezpur and the unit was responsible for provisioning communication in entire Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. The officer was Chief Signal Officer at Chennai and also Dy Chief Signal Officer at HQ Northern Command. After completion of M Tech from IIT Kanpur in 1994, he was posted as Deputy Director from 1994 to 1997 and subsequently as Director from December 2006 to June 2009 in Directorate dealing with the satellite communication aspects of the Army. Brig Sharma was also Research Fellow at IDSA from July 2009 to June 2011 and worked on projects related to space capability and other aspects of the space system.
Mr. Daniel Porras is currently the Space Security Fellow for the UN Institute for Disarmament Research (Geneva). His work focuses on political/legal issues surrounding space security and, in particular, the progressive development of sustainable norms of behaviour. Mr. Porras has been an Associate for LMI Advisors (Washington, DC), advising clients on a wide range of international legal issues related to space activities, telecommunications and experimental equipment. He was also an Associate Officer for UNIDROIT (Rome) where he worked on the Space Protocol, an international instrument for financing space assets. Mr. Porras has held a visiting fellowship at the Observer Research Foundation (New Delhi) and holds an LL.M in International Business and Economics Law from the Georgetown University Law Center (Washington, DC).
Mr. Divyanshu Poddar is the founder of Rocketeers. Rocketeers works towards establishing a model and amateur rocketry ecosystem in India. Divyanshu is responsible for the design and conceptualization of the range of black powder and ACPC rocketry motors offered by Rocketeers. He is a serial entrepreneur with companies such as Pub'd-Up and Specific Impulse Technologies under his belt. He has a B. Tech in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology(IIST) and he specializes in manufacturing technology and business strategy. He established the first Model United Nations chapter of Kerala and has been a core committee head for finance and publicity for the technical festival at IIST and has worked in the team of Chandrayaan 2 for a short period of time.
Friederike Tschampa is Head of Political Affairs at the Delegation of the European Union to India, covering, amongst other, India's regional and international policies, India-EU relations including political and security cooperation as well as high-level visits and meetings.
In earlier assignments, Ms. Tschampa handled United Nations and Asian human rights issues in the European External Action Service’s Global and Multilateral Department as well as, previously, Asia regional affairs and the coordination of the Political and Security Committee in the Council of the European Union. On posting in New York from 2008 until 2012, as part of the Delegation's Political Team, she contributed to building the EU’s new role at the United Nations following the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty.
Prior to joining the EU civil service, Ms. Tschampa worked for the German Ministry for International Cooperation in Berlin, international organisations in Sarajevo/Bosnia and the German Mission to the United Nations in Geneva.
Dr. Feng-Tai Hwang leads the Division of Systems Engineering at National Space Organization, NARlabs, in Taiwan. He has obtained his B.S. degree in Mathematics and Master’s degree in Industrial and Applied Mathematics and Ph.D. in Engineering Mechanics from the Ohio State UniversityAfter graduated from the OSU, he came back to Taiwan and worked in NTHU, and the Science and Technology Information Centre of National Science Council (NSC) for post doc research in a short period, and then moved to Industrial Technology Research Institute. (ITRI) later. He joined National Space Organization of Taiwan since 2003. His research interests are mainly in the areas of space engineering, especially in mission analysis, and satellite remote sensing planning & scheduling problem. He is also interesting in space policy analysis as well as space industrial analysis. He has published about 40 papers in related domestic and international conferences.
Dr. Francis Chizea is presently the Director in charge of Planning, Policy and Research at National Space Research and Development (NASRDA) of Nigeria, a position he has held since 2010. He is a pioneer staff of the NASRDA and has held various positions since its establishment managing many strategic projects some of which include the building and launching of the Nigeriasat-1, Nigeriasat-2 and the Nigeriasat-X satellites. He holds a PhD degree in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Nigeria. He is an International Space University alumnus and was also part of Nigeria Federal Ministry of Science and Technology as a Scientific Officer.
Mr. Gadhadar Reddy founded NoPo Nanotechnologies in 2011 to develop Carbon Nanotube based technologies for use in Space. NoPo is currently the only manufacturer to produce Single Walled Carbon Nanotubes continuously using their NoPo HiPCO process. NoPo was ranked Bangalore’s Top 3 Technology Startup in 2016 by EO CARES and India’s Top 5 Innovative Technology Company in 2017 by Lockheed Martin-DST-Tata Trusts (IIGP 2.0). His team won the 4th International Space Power Competition of SGAC in 2015 for their concept on Carbon Nanotube based Space Power. Mr. Reddy has a Bachelor degree in Electronics Engineering, a Masters in Nanotechnology and a Honors Diploma in Space Sciences.
Mr. Gagan Agrawal joined Northern Sky Research in January 2017. He is the co-author for NSR's Satellite Operator Financial Analysis (SOFA) report, Global Satellite Capacity Supply and Demand (GSCSD) Update report and the lead author for Satellite Capacity Pricing Index (SCPI) report.
Mr. Agrawal joins NSR after completing Master of Space Studies from International Space University. As part of the course, he has done a 6 month stint with SES, which involved strategic evaluation of shifts in video and media business due to disruptions from IP tech, telco networks and LEO constellations. He has authored reports on Market entry strategies for space systems manufacturers into India and 'International collaboration strategies for future Moon missions' at ISU.
Prior to ISU, Mr. Agrawal has worked for Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) for 3 years in the field of Aerodynamics and Aeroelasticity with project management responsibilities on the Reusable Launch Vehicle Technology Demonstrator Project (RLV-TD). His experience touches both theoretical simulation and wind tunnel experimentation side of launch vehicle technology. He has a Bachelor's in Aerospace from Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology, where he specialized in vehicle design through various projects, most notable being the IIST-ISRO Vyom Sounding Rocket, which was a first rocket launched by a student team in Asia. He has done various internships on topics like Solid motor design at ISRO, Control systems at IIST, and Plasma thrusters at Dept. of Atomic Energy .
Mr. Agrawal has been published with Defense Research and Development Laboratory, India and International Astronautical Congress, Mexico. He co-founded an education startup Rocketeers, with key roles in R&D, teaching and strategic planning. He also has been a speaker to various schools, colleges, TEDx and youth forums speaking on education related issues.
Ian Christensen is a Project Manager at Secure World Foundation and has eight years of professional experience as a consultant and analyst focused on international and domestic commercial space, satellite, and aviation markets.
Prior to joining SWF, Mr. Christensen worked at leading space-sector consulting firms Futron Corporation and Avascent. In these positions he managed or served in lead analysis roles on market, business planning, and forecasting studies for numerous commercial space sector clients in the United States, Israel, and Europe. For government clients, Ian has provided space-related strategic and analytic services for NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the United States Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), and the Government of Australia. Mr. Christensen has supported consulting engagements with clients in Australia, Israel, the Isle of Man, Japan, and South Korea; and led in-country work in Brazil, Burkina Faso, Europe, and Japan.
Mr. Christensen holds a Master of Arts (M.A.) in international science and technology with a focus on space policy from the George Washington University Elliott School for International Affairs. He holds dual Bachelor’s of Science (B.S.) degrees in political science and biochemistry from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He also completed the International Space University (ISU) 2007 Space Studies Program in Beijing, China.
Prof. Jayati Srivastava is Professor of International Politics at the Centre for International Politics, Organization and Disarmament (CIPOD), School of International Studies (SIS), Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi.
She is a recipient of the Hermes Fellowship awarded by the Fondation Maison des Sciences de l’Homme, Paris and also has been a Visiting Professor at the Institut d’Études Politiques, Grenoble and Institut d’Études Politiques Bordeaux, France. Besides, she has been a Research Fellow at the South Asia Institute, University of Heidelberg, Germany and a Visiting Fellow at the Department of Peace and Conflict Research, University of Uppsala, Sweden.
Her publications includes monographs: Think Tanks in South Asia: Analysing the Knowledge-Power Interface, London: Overseas Development Institute (ODI), 2011; A Critical Look at Economic Governance in India: The Case of National Foreign Trade Policy, Jaipur: CUTS International (with the support of Norwegian Embassy in India and Oxfam NOVIB, the Netherlands), 2008; ‘NGOs at the Interface of WTO: The Legitimacy Dimension’, New Delhi: Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, 2005; ‘People’s Perceptions on Globalisation and International Trade’, CUTS-CITEE: Jaipur, 2005, and; Mainstreaming Environment Through Jurisprudence: Implications of the Shrimp-Turtle Decision in the WTO for India and other Developing Countries, ICRIER Working Paper No. 78, New Delhi: ICRIER, April, 2002 (with Rajeev Ahuja).
She is currently working on two projects: Insignia and Images of Justice: Politics, Law and Visual Culture in the Age of Globalisation; and Re-working the ‘Knowledge Structures’ in International Relations: Some Indian Contributions, with a focus on Indian traditions/thinking on ethics of warfare.
Her area of research includes global civil society; legitimacy of global governance; global justice; southern perspectives on IR and, international environmental politics. She has published widely in peer-reviewed journals and has many monographs to her credits from reputed national and international institutions on issues of global civil society, sustainable development, grassroots environmentalism, globalisation, think tanks and legitimacy of global governance.
She holds a PhD degree from the Jawaharlal Nehru University, where she also studied for her MA and MPhil degrees. She did her BA (Honours) in Political Science from Miranda House, University of Delhi.
Mr. Jean-Yves Le Gall is President of the Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES), the French space agency. In this capacity, he is Interministerial Coordinator for satellite navigation programmes and Chair of the Administrative Board of GSA, the European GNSS Agency. He is also Chair of the Council of the European Space Agency (ESA) and President of the International Astronautical Federation (IAF).
Jean-Yves Le Gall is a qualified engineer and scientist who has devoted his entire career to the European space programme, holding positions within the French national scientific research agency CNRS, several French ministries, at Novespace and a first stint with CNES before joining Starsem and Arianespace for 12 years, where he was CEO then Chairman & CEO. He is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA) and Vice-President of the "Space Circle" at French think-tank CEPS (Centre d’Etude et de Prospective Stratégique). He also chairs the France-Japan business council of Medef International, and is a member of the French-Mexican Strategic Council.
He received the Astronautics Prize from the French Association of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AAAF) in 2001. He was named Via Satellite magazine’s 2005 Satellite Executive of the Year and received the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007 from the Asia-Pacific Satellite Communications Council (APSCC). In 2011 he was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the Society of Satellite Professionals International (SPPI) and received the Icarus Prize from the French association of professional aerospace journalists (AJPAE). In 2014 he received a Laureate Award from Aviation Week & Space Technology magazine.
Jean-Yves Le Gall holds the rank of Commander of the National Order of Merit and Officer in the Legion of Honour in France. He has also been awarded the Order of Friendship by the Russian Federation and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, by the government of Japan.
Prof. Joan Johnson-Freese has been a member of the faculty of the Naval War College since 2002. Previously, she was on the faculty at the Asia Pacific Centre for Security Studies in Honolulu, Hawaii; the Air War College in Montgomery; and Director of the Centre for Space Policy & Law at the University of Central Florida.
Within international and national security studies, Joan focuses on globalization and technology programs and policies generally, and space programs and policies specifically, including issues relating to technology transfer, missile defence, and space security. She has testified before Congress on several occasions regarding Chinese space activities and space security issues. She is on the editorial board of China Security, a member of the International Academy of Astronautics, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the International Space University, served on the Space Studies Board of the National Academy of Sciences, and the Lyles Commission to examine the future of the U.S. civil space programme, and an Adjunct Professor at the Watson Institute, Brown University.
In addition to teaching courses on Security Studies at the Naval War College, she also teaches courses on Globalization & Terrorism and Space & Security at Harvard. She has travelled extensively in support of the Naval War College PME engagement program, making presentations and conducting curriculum discussions in Cameroon, Ethiopia, Colombia, Mexico, Kenya, South Africa, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and the Dominican Republic.
Recent books include Heavenly Ambitions: America’s Quest to Dominate Space, (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2009), and Space as a Strategic Asset, (Columbia University Press, 2007). Prior books include: The Chinese Space Program: A Mystery Within a Maze (Krieger Publishing, 1998); Space: The Dormant Frontier, Changing the Space Paradigm for the 21st Century, (Praeger Publishers, 1997); The Prestige Trap: A Comparative Study of the US, European and Japanese Space Programs, with Roger Handberg, (Kendall-Hunt, 1994); Over the Pacific: Japanese Space Policy Into the 21st Century, (Kendall-Hunt, 1993); and Changing Patterns of International Cooperation in Space, (Krieger Publishing, 1990). She has also published over 80 journal articles relating to international space cooperation and competition issues.
Dr. John B. Sheldon is the Chairman and President of ThorGroup GmbH, a Swiss-based consulting and intelligence company serving the security, space, and cyberspace sectors. He is also the publisher of SpaceWatch Global.
Prior to his current positions, John was Executive Director of the George C. Marshall Institute in Washington, DC, and Professor of Space and Cyberspace Strategic Studies at the U.S. Air Force’s School of Advanced Air and Space Studies (SAASS), at Maxwell AFB, Alabama. John has consulted on space and cyber issues for numerous governments and corporations around the world.
A former British diplomat, John holds Bachelor and Masters degrees from the University of Hull, UK, and a Ph.D. in politics and international relations from the University of Reading, UK. He currently resides in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Mr. Julius Amrit is a business strategy expert. At Axiom Labs, he guides the long-term value creation strategy besides keeping the tech geeks focused. He is also a board member.
Prior to co-founding Axiom labs, Julius worked in various leadership roles in education, alternate media and financial services. He has worked with NIIT, Standard Chartered, Morgan Stanley and Avendus Capital. He regularly advises several startups and small enterprises. Julius is post-graduate in business management from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta. He is an ardent believer in progressive business disruption, unlocking business potential for entrepreneurs and promoters is his mission. In the last 18 years, he has helped organizations accelerate growth and build strategic core businesses and beyond.
Mr. K. Krishna is Vice President and Chief Technology Officer of Hughes in India. He has been with Hughes and the satellite industry for more than 25 years. He has been one of the founding members of its India operations and is responsible for the technology roadmap of the company and spearheads its various strategic initiatives. Mr. Krishna represents Hughes and the VSAT industry in various forums. He is President of the VSAT industry association (VSAT Services Association of India) and active member of Society for Satellite Professionals International. In addition to this, he also represents the Global VSAT Forum in India.
Prof. Kazuto Suzuki is Vice Dean and Professor of International Politics at Public Policy School of Hokkaido University, Japan. He graduated Department of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University, and received Ph.D. from Sussex European Institute, University of Sussex, England. He has worked in the Fondation pour la Recherche Strategique in Paris, France as assistant researcher and the Associate Professor at the University of Tsukuba from 2000 to 2008, and moved to Hokkaido University. He also spent one year at Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University from 2012 to 2013 as visiting researcher. He served as an expert in the Panel of Experts for Iranian Sanction Committee under the United Nations Security Council from 2013 to July 2015. He has conducted researches from International Political Economy perspective in Space Policy, together with nuclear energy policy, export control, counter-terrorism, non-proliferation, and policies on market regulation. He has contributed to the drafting the Basic Space Law of Japan, and serves as a member of Sub-committees of industrial policy and space security policy of National Space Policy Commission. His recent work includes Space and International Politics (2011, in Japanese, awarded Suntory Prize for Social Sciences and Humanities), Regulatory Power of EU (editor 2012, in Japanese), Policy Logics and Institutions of European Space Collaboration (2003) and many others.
Ms. Kriti Trehan leads the technology laws & policy advisory practice at the Law Offices of Panag & Babu and is based in the firm’s New Delhi office. She works across a wide range of issues in the information and communications technology sector where regulatory frameworks are still evolving. She advises leading technology innovators across the globe on seamless rollout of products and services with innovations untested by Indian law.
In the past, Kriti has worked with a tier 1 law firm, researched for a women’s rights organisation, participated in the international discourse on climate change and worked with the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia.
Prof. Laxminarayan Raja is Professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at The University of Texas at Austin where he holds the Robert L. Parker Sr. Endowed Professorship. He has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering, M.S. in Nuclear Engineering, and a B. Tech. in Aerospace Engineering. His primary research area is in thermal and non-thermal plasma discharge science as applied to spacecraft electric propulsion, aerodynamic flow control, materials processing, and electromagnetic wave control. His research approach involves large-scale computational modeling for simulation of plasma discharges in the above application areas. His research has been funded by the US National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research and Department of Energy.
Raja received the prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2001. He serves on the AIAA Plasma Dynamics and Lasers (PDL) Technical Committee and was the PDL Technical Program Chair for the 2014 AIAA SciTech meeting held in National Harbor, Washington DC. He was the Secretary for the 65th Gaseous Electronics Conference of the American Physical Society held in Austin, Texas in 2012.
Raja has strong entrepreneurial interest having founded a successful company that develops high-fidelity multi-physics simulation tools for the aerospace, semiconductor, and electrical device manufacturing industries. He is currently entrepreneurial focus is a new venture in India that targets aerospace and related industries.
Mr. Marco Aliberti works as a Resident Fellow at the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) in Vienna, Austria, where he has carried out and published research projects on access to space, human spaceflight, space governance and international relations of space, and Asia’s space programmes – particularly those of China, Japan and India. Mr. Aliberti graduated in Oriental Languages and Cultures at the University of Rome “La Sapienza”, and obtained a M.A. in International Relations from the Italian Diplomatic Academy (SIOI) in Rome. He also completed a Master of Advanced Studies in Space Policy and Institutions with the Italian Space Agency(ASI), SIOI and the National Research Council (CNR); Security Studies at the Institute of Global Studies – School of Government in Rome; as well as International Asian Studies at the University of Naples “L'Orientale”, with a specialisation in East Asian Relations. Mr. Aliberti is currently finalising a book titled “India in Space Between Utility and Geopolitics” to be published by Springer in the “Studies in Space Policies” book series.
Mr. Neel Mehta is Co-Founder and Director of Asteria Aerospace. He is responsible for leading product development, focusing on the research of new technologies for making innovative products. He also pursues and develops opportunities to collaborate with external technology partners. Prior to founding Asteria, Neel worked for more than 3 years as a System Engineer (Flight Controls) in Rockwell Collins Inc., USA. He has extensive experience in flight control law design and analysis, flight simulation, flight test, and developing and certifying end-to-end flight control systems for several commercial aircraft programs. Neel also has deep systems level knowledge and practical experience in designing and testing avionics subsystems, interactions between avionics subsystems, and the processes to develop and certify avionics systems for commercial aircraft. He has a B.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering from Purdue University and a M.S. degree in the same field from Georgia Tech with a specialization in Flight Dynamics and Control.
Ms. Neha Satak is the Co-founder and CEO of Astrome Technologies Pvt. Ltd. She is a serial entrepreneur and a researcher. She holds a Ph.D. from Texas A&M University and a Master’s from Indian Institute of Science in Aerospace Engineering. Her Ph.D. dissertation on Behavior Learning in Game Theory received interest from the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL), USA following which she worked with AFRL as a Postdoctoral Research Associate through University of Florida.
She has worked extensively on various aspects relating to Unmanned/Micro Aerial Vehicle (UAV/MAV), asteroids and satellites. During her Master’s, she designed an MAV platform named Sapthami that has been very successful and has undergone further development through various grants received by her lab. She is an expert in estimation, dynamics & control techniques and differential game theory. She has published a number of journal and conference articles and a book chapter.
Prior to Astrome, she co-founded two space companies. Scientific Preparatory Academy of Cosmic Explorers (SPACE) is a non-profit company based in the Isle of Man that promotes hands-on space education by organizing conferences, virtual internships and joint research. SPACE has organized three international conferences to bring together space enthusiasts and space companies and discuss important issues to be solved in the space industry and the way forward. SPACE also organized a virtual internship in which students and young professional from 7 countries participated and worked on a business and technical plan for asteroid mining business. Neha’s role has been in idea generation and their execution for the organization to promote hands-on space education.
Experimental Center for Applied Physical Systems (ECAPS, LLC) is a for profit Texas based company that develops non-destructive Asteroid deflection technology and Asteroid detection technology. ECAPS received $1million grant to develop asteroid deflection technology that it successfully completed in 2014. Since 2014, ECAPS have been developing STEM education products related to Space. Here she gained experience in various aspects of business, project management and technology development.
Commodore Nishant Kumar joined Indian Navy in 1991 and is currently posted as Director of Military Affairs in the Disarmament & International Security Affairs (D&ISA) Division at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi. His responsibilities include all current issues of Maritime Security, Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW), Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) and multilateral security forums.
Previously, Commodore Nishant Kumar has been Officer-in Charge of Signal School at Kochi and commanded Indian Naval Ship Sujata. He also served in Directorate of Naval Signals at Naval Headquarters in New Delhi as well as in Eastern Naval Command Headquarters (Command Plans Officer) at Visakhapatnam. He has also served onboard various Naval Ships as Executive Officer and Signal Communication Officer.
An alumni of National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla and Staff College, Wellington, Commodore Nishant Kumar has a MSC (Def Studies) from Chennai University. He has also done Higher Defence Orientation Course from Army War College, Mhow.
Amb. Paul Meyer is Fellow in International Security and Adjunct Professor of International Studies at Simon Fraser University and a Senior Fellow with The Simons Foundation. Prior to assuming his current appointments in 2011, Mr. Meyer had a 35-year career with the Canadian Foreign Service. Mr. Meyer had diplomatic assignments in Oslo, Moscow, Brussels (NATO), Washington, Tokyo and from 2003-2007 in Geneva where he served as Canada’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations and to the Conference on Disarmament. At the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade’s HQ, Meyer held a variety of positions including Director General for International Security (1998-2001) and Director General for Security and Intelligence (2007-2010). Throughout his work, Meyer has sought to promote international security by means of creative diplomacy. He currently is teaching a course on diplomacy at SFU’s School for International Studies and is engaged in research and writing on issues of nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament, outer space security and international cyber security.
Mr. Prateep Basu is the Chief Operating Officer at SatSure Limited. Previously, he was an Analyst at Northern Sky Research, a global market research and consulting firm focused on commercial satellite industry and satellite-based services. Prateep is an aerospace engineer graduating from the Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology, Trivandrum and with Masters in Space Studies from the International Space University, Strasbourg. He has worked as a liquid propulsion engineer in ISRO at Sriharikota. He has published papers in peer reviewed international journals, and is a regular speaker at industry conferences.
Group Captain Puneet Bhalla is a serving helicopter pilot of the Indian Air Force, with more than two decades of flying experience in diverse roles, covering most regions of the country. He has also served as a member of the UN Mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo. He is an alumnus of the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla and Defence Services Staff College, Wellington. His areas of research interests include technology and its application in support of national security. He has published numerous papers on outer space, unmanned systems and cyber security. His recently published book is titled Space Security: Emerging Technologies and Trends. He is currently serving as an instructor at the Air Force Administrative College, Coimbatore.
Mr. Rahul Narayan is Founder of TeamIndus which is building a spacecraft capable of landing on the Moon by March 2018. As a futuristic technologist creator, he leads the team which is engineering path-breaking solutions for tomorrow’s challenges. Part of the World Economic Forum Global futures council for Space, he is a policy contributor to the Aerospace domain, member expert on unmanned aerial systems policy committee for Karnataka and an active contributor to the global narrative on NewSpace.
Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan is Senior Fellow and Head of the Nuclear and Space Policy Initiative at the Observer Research Foundation. Rajagopalan joined ORF after a five-year stint at the National Security Council Secretariat, 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, Taichung, Taiwan in 2012.
Amb. Rakesh Sood is a Distinguished Fellow at ORF. He has over 38 years of experience in the field of foreign affairs, economic diplomacy and international security issues. Before joining the Indian Foreign Service in 1976, he worked for a couple of years in the private sector. He set up the Disarmament and International Security Affairs Division in the Foreign Ministry, which he led for eight years till the end of 2000. Amb. Sood served as India’s first Ambassador — Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament at the United Nations in Geneva.
Mr. Ravi Kataria is Head - Marketing & Business Development, Missiles & Aerospace at Larsen & Toubro (L&T). He has experience in Strategy Planning, Sales & Marketing, Business Development, Program and Contract Management. L&T is today the largest private sector Defence & Aerospace manufacturing Company in India.
A mechanical Engineer of 1992 batch from Walchand College of Engineering, Sangli, Maharashtra, he joined Larsen & Toubro at Mumbai as a trainee engineer. He has also completed Executive MBA from SP Jain Institute of Management & Research and Leadership academy from Ross school of Management.
Dr. Rodrigo Leonardi joined the Brazilian Space Agency in 2017. He was recently appointed deputy-director of Satellites, Applications and Development and coordinates a portfolio of projects and initiatives to promote space related science and technology.
He received his PhD in Astrophysics from the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research in 2006 and his BS degree in Mathematics from the University of Brasília in 1999. He was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Physics of the University of California at Santa Barbara, USA, from 2007 to 2009.
He joined the European Space Agency in 2009 and worked as a scientist at ESTEC, in the Netherlands, and at ESAC in Spain. At ESA, he gained experience with science operations, as well as working with a large number of scientists spread geographically. More specifically, he worked as the Community Support Scientist for the Planck mission. In 2015, Leonardi returned to Brazil and worked at CGEE, a think tank center for strategic studies in technology and innovation, where he conducted prospective studies for the Brazilian space sector. He has coauthored 156 papers in peer reviewed scientific journals.
Dr. Rogel Mari Sese is the Program Leader of the National Space Development Program, Philippines’ Department of Science and Technology. He obtained Master’s degree in Physics and Doctorate in Physics in 2009 at the University of Tsukuba with a specialization in computational astrophysics focusing on the radiative transfer processes in circumstellar disks around massive stars.
In 2011, Dr. Sese returned to his original post as an Assistant Professor of Physics at the University of the Philippines Los Baños and spearheaded the creation of the first Astrophysics Research Laboratory in the country. He was also appointed as the Government Focal Person of the Philippine Space Science Education Program under the Science Education Institute of the Department of Science and Technology. He is active in promoting space science education and development in the Philippines through various initiatives such as the Universe Awareness Program and the Galileo Teacher Training Program. His research interests include stellar astrophysics, astrophysical instrumentation, nano-satellite development and space science education. Recently, he was a participant in the 4th CanSat Leadership Training Program and was grantee of the 2012 Emerging Space Leaders Grant Program of the International Astronautical Federation.
Dr. Sese is involved with several international organizations such as the Space Generation Advisory Council and World Space Week Organization. He is also the current Chairman of the Southeast Asian Young Astronomers Collaboration and President of Regulus SpaceTech, a space technology R&D company based in the Philippines.
Mr. Rohan Ganapathy is the CEO and one of the full time directors of Bellatrix Aerospace. The company was spawned when he was 22 years old along with the support of four like-minded visionaries from a small office space in Coimbatore. His expertise on spacecraft propulsion and dynamics allowed the company to evolve into a stable platform from which various technologies were designed and developed with the support of other members of the organisation. He is the Principal Project Architect of India’s first Microwave Electric Propulsion system which received critical acclaim. In addition to his expertise in the overall function of the company, he is actively involved in engineering, designing and testing within the various teams. This has allowed company to diversify from just spacecraft propulsion units into one which also specialises in Rocket Propulsion. He is an Aeronautical Engineer and is an active participant in various astronomy platforms across the country.
Prof. S. Chandrashekar is JRD Tata Visiting Professor at The International Strategic & Security Studies Programme, National Institute of Advanced Studies. He spent more than 20 years working at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). His work at ISRO covered all parts of the programme – satellite, rockets as well as the applications of space technology especially remote sensing. He was also involved with activities related to international co-operation and has represented and led Indian delegations to the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. His research interests at IIMB include technology and competitive advantage, national technology priorities and national technology policy, studies on innovation, telecommunications in the Indian context, national innovation systems, modelling complex systems and national security issues.
His recent work includes a study of sensitive installations using open source satellite imagery. He has also been involved with other members of the group on a micro-level comparative case study of Chinese capabilities in one domain of technology related to the development of turbo-fan aircraft engine technology.
Sachin Bahmba is an Indian born entrepreneur and philanthropist who has been a pioneer in revolutionising the spread of Astronomy and Space Science in sectors from education to tourism and has succeeded in creating a new business dimension in India. His effort has been instrumental in establishing India’s largest private astronomy and space science company. He is also the largest non-government employer in the field of these sciences.
His passion and vision to popularise science and spread scientific temperament among the masses, especially young minds, has led to the creation of the SPACE group of companies. His vision has been instrumental in the growth of SPACE, from the initiation of new programmes in the education sector to the development of astro-tourism as a concept. Mr. Bahmba is a disciple of physics and hands-on science pedagogy; an educationist with more than ten years of experience. He is also an avid amateur astronomer and wild life enthusiast. He is president of India Chapter of Space Tourism Society, USA. He is the Founder of Astronomica and Eca (Eclipse Chasers Athenaeum).
Mr. C.D. Shridhara is presently working as Director, Space Systems, Ananth Technologies Limited, Bangalore. He was a Outstanding Scientist and Deputy Director, ISRO Satellite Centre, Bangalore. He has 38 years of experience on satellite systems and in the design and development of spacecraft mechanism systems. Mr. Shridhara has played a significant role in the Development of Lunar lander and Rover for the CHANDRAYAAN 2 project. He was the Associated Project Director for the Human Spaceflight Project. He has also contributed significantly for productionisation of various spacecraft systems as Deputy Director, Satellite Productionisation Area.
He has 43 publications in National and International Journals and conferences to his credit and has also delivered invited talks in different topics including Robotic Systems for Space Applications, Mangalyaan - Indian mission to Mars, India in Space etc.
He is recipient of Dr. Biren Roy Space Science and design award for the year 2014, National Design award in Mechanical Engineering by National Design & Research Forum for outstanding contributions in the field of Mechanical Engineering, ISRO Team Excellence Award 2011 as team leader for the development of Unfurlable Antenna Mechanism and ISRO merit award in 2012.
Mr. Siddhesh Naik is Co-Founder of Arksa, a remote sensing payloads company based out of Bangalore. He holds a Master's Degree in Aerospace Engineering from University of Colorado Boulder and a Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering from University of Mumbai. During his time at CU-Boulder he worked on NASA funded CubeSat MinXSS, in different capacities over a period of 20 months. He has previous experiences with Colorado Center for Astrodynamics Research (CCAR), Laboratory of Atmospheric and Space Physics (LASP), Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC), Students for Exploration and Development of Space(SEDS) and Team Indus.
Ms. Smita Jha is Head of Group Strategy and Investments at Hindustan Times Media. She has over 20 years of experience working with various media companies in Satellite, Television, Print, Radio, Film, Animation, Gaming, Music and Sports industries. In her previous role with PricewaterhouseCoopers, she led the Entertainment & Media (E&M) practice for PwC India. She has led numerous projects in the consulting domain relating to Strategy and Operations and was responsible for the fastest growing practice within PwC in India. She has been adjudged to be amongst top 50 women in Media, Marketing & Advertising.
Dr. Stuart Eves is Chair of UK Space Information Exchange (SPIE) Forum. Previously, he was Lead Mission Concepts Engineer for Surrey Satellite Technology Limited. He has worked in the space industry since 2004, following a 16-year career with the UK MOD.
Stuart has worked on a variety of satellite missions, including Skynet 4, Skynet 5, and TDS-1. The highlight of Stuart’s career to date was the initiation of the TopSat imaging satellite programme, which established a new world record for “resolution per mass of satellite”, and was the subject of a display in the Science Museum in London.
He has been writing on the subject of space security for several years, and is currently the industry chair of the Space Information Exchange (SPIE) forum in the UK. He has also recently completed a book entitled Space Traffic Control. Stuart has an MSc in Astrophysics, a PhD in constellation design, and has been a Fellow of the UK’s Royal Astronomical Society for more than 25 years.
Mr. Sunil K. Gupta is an Indian Telecommunication Service (ITS) Officer. Presently he is working as Secretary, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and is also holding the additional charge of Principal Advisor (Broadcasting & Cable Services) in TRAI. He is a gold medalist of Allahabad University and had done his graduation on “Electronics and Telecommunication” and MBA from Delhi. He joined Indian Telecom Services (ITS) in year 1983 and worked in Department of Telecommunication in various capacities.
For the last ten years, he is involved in Telecom licensing, regulations and its implementation. He has dealt with issues relating to Broadband, Infrastructure sharing, IP addresses, Licensing, FM Radio and Cable services. He was Member of various high profile committees such as Internet Governance Working Group” constituted by Department of Information Technology, Convener of NGN Expert Committee constituted under aegis of TRAI, Member of South Asian Telecom Regulatory Council (SATRC) and member of IPv6 focus Group constituted by DOT etc.
Sunjoy Joshi is Chairman of Observer Research Foundation. He has written extensively on energy policy, climate change, development studies, and India's foreign policy. Before joining ORF, Joshi served in the prestigious Indian Administrative Service beginning in 1983. In this capacity, he handled oil and gas exploration as Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas and was the Government-nominated Director on the Boards of ONGC, OVL, OIL and MRPL.
Surbhi Baghotia is a graduate in aerospace engineering currently working as Scientist/Engineer - SD in Aerospace Mechanisms Group of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC). She is involved in the development, realisation and integration of Payload Fairing related systems for GSLV Mk-II launch vehicle. She has worked for the development and qualification of recovery systems for Human Space flight programme Crew Module required after re-entry and splashdown into the Bay of Bengal. She has also designed, developed and qualified one-way vent valves used for venting of Cryogenic stages of both GSLV MkII and MkIII launch vehicles during propellant filling operations.
Mr. Tiago Rebelo is currently the head of the Aerospace & Ocean Engineering department at CEiiA – a Portuguese Centre of Engineering and Product Development. Before taking leadership of a multidisciplinary team facing the challenges associated with product development for both the aerospace and ocean fields, Tiago has worked at CEiiA as a Research Engineer and later as a project manager for aerospace research, development and engineering projects. In his past, he worked as a Research Engineer at Airbus Space and Defence, having collaborated, as well, with the European Space Agency (ESA), and the Technical University of Munich (TUM). He holds a BSc in Aeronautical Engineering from University of Beira Interior – Portugal, an MSc with a Major in Space Technology from Luleå University of Technology – Sweden and an MSc in Astronautics and Space Engineering from Cranfield University – United Kingdom.
Mr. Tom Segert is one of the founders and Director of Business Development of Berlin Space Technologies (BST). He is responsible for strategy and business development. BST is one of the five commercial companies in Germany that have the capability to build complete satellite systems and one of three that currently do. Prior the founding of BST in 2010, he has worked 5 years as cluster manager and speaker for the space industry network in Germany’s capital region (RiBB) and before that 3 years as project manager for space projects at TUB. In the last decade, Tom has successfully challenged long held business paradigms and thus impacted the new space industry both globally and locally.
Dr. Vijay Kumar Saraswat is an Indian scientist who served as Secretary, Dept. of Defence R&D; Director General of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Scientific Advisor to Raksha Mantri. Dr. Saraswat is the Chief Designer of missiles like Agni, Prithvi, Dhanush and Interceptors of Ballistic Missile Defence programme. For his service to the nation, he was conferred Padma Shri in 1998 and Padma Bhushan in 2013 from the Government of India. Dr. Saraswat is currently a permanent member of NITI (National Institute of Transforming India) Aayog.
Victoria Samson is the Washington Office Director for Secure World Foundation (SWF) and has nearly twenty years of experience in military space and security issues. SWF, an independent NGO that focuses on the long-term sustainable use of outer space, facilitates discussions of issues that may affect the stability and security of the space domain. Before joining SWF, Ms. Samson served as a Senior Analyst for the Center for Defense Information (CDI), where she leveraged her expertise in missile defense, nuclear reductions, and space security issues to conduct in-depth analysis and media commentary. Prior to her time at CDI, Ms. Samson was the Senior Policy Associate at the Coalition to Reduce Nuclear Dangers, a consortium of arms control groups in the Washington, D.C. area, where she worked with Congressional staffers, members of the media, embassy officials, citizens, and think-tanks on issues surrounding dealing with national missile defense and nuclear weapons reductions. Before that, she was a researcher at Riverside Research Institute, where she worked on war-gaming scenarios for the Missile Defense Agency's Directorate of Intelligence.
Known throughout the space and security arena as a thought leader on policy and budgetary issues, Ms. Samson is often interviewed by multinational media outlets, including the New York Times, Space News, and NPR. She is also a prolific author of numerous op-eds, analytical pieces, journal articles, and updates on space security matters.
Ms. Samson holds a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree in political science with a specialization in international relations from UCLA and a Master of Arts (M.A.) in international relations from the Johns Hopkins Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.
Lt. Gen. Vinod G. Khandare, PVSM, AVSM, SM (retd.), former Director General, Defence Intelligence Agency and DCIDS (Int) was commissioned into the Garhwal Rifles Regiment in 1979. During his 39 years of eventful military career and active service, the ofﬁcer has held varied command, staff and instructional appointments at all levels and in all types of terrain.
He has served with UN Peace Keeping Force in Central America which successfully resolved the civil war in El Salvador in 1994. He has been an Instructor at Infantry School, Directing staff at Defence Services Staff College and Chief Instructor at Training Team in Lesotho. He was also an Adviser to the Military hierarchy of Lesotho Defence Force.
The Officer was awarded Sena Medal (Gallantry) in 2002. He Commanded an Infantry Division in Kashmir and subsequently took over the appointment Additional Military Secretary in Army Headquarters and also ofﬁciated as Military Secretary.
The ofﬁcer has been an active participant in various Seminars on war prevention, war ﬁghting, peace keeping, stabilization operations, counter terrorism, information warfare, social media, cyber warfare and various major policy making decision at the apex level. For his sustained hard work and meritorious service the General has been decorated with Ati Vishisht Seva Medal in 2014.
In recognition of his service to the nation, he has been awarded with Param Vishisht Seva Medal in 2017.