Former Executive Directors

Imtiaz Ahmed

Imtiaz Ahmed

Imtiaz Ahmed is a Professor of International Relations and Director, Centre for Genocide Studies at the University of Dhaka. Professor Ahmed was educated at the University of Dhaka, Carlton University, Ottawa, and the Australian National University, Canberra. He is also currently Visiting Professor at the Sagesse University, Beirut.

Professor Ahmed is the recipient of various awards and honours. He has been a fellow in the following institutions: Ford Foundation Fellow at the University of Oxford; Asia Fellow at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies (CSDS), Delhi; Rockefeller Fellow at the Rockefeller Foundation; Japan Foundation Fellow at the Yokohama City University; Research Fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore; and Foreign Policy Fellow at the University of Maryland and College Park.

He has authored, co-authored, or edited 18 books and 6 monographs. More than 110 research papers and scholarly articles have been published in leading journals and chapters in edited volumes. His recent publication is an edited volume titled:Human Rights in Bangladesh: Past, Present & Futures(Dhaka: University Press Limited, 2014). His forthcoming publication is People of Many Rivers: Tales from the Riverbanks (Dhaka: University Press Limited, i.p.).


Mallika Joseph

Mallika is the Deputy Director (Operations) at the AII @Delhi. Mallika also serves as Secretary of the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies in an honorary capacity. She served as the Executive Director of the Regional Centre for Strategic Studies (RCSS) from January 2012 until December 2014.
Mallika has worked on various issues relating to South Asian security and her areas of interest include human security, security sector reform, international organized crime, international terrorism, Left Extremism, improvised explosive devices, small arms and light weapons. She specializes on security sector reform (SSR) and is one of the 24 experts who were inducted into the UN Roster of SSR Experts in 2009. In 2007 and in 2006, she was part of the DFID high-level technical team that offered consultancy for broad- based SSR engagement in Guyana; the mission resulted with the SSR Action Plan being tabled in the Guyanese Parliament and passed unanimously.
In 2009, she also received the prestigious UK Chevening Fellowship which enabled her to undergo a 12 week training program/fellowship from January to April 2009 at the National Policing Improvement Agency at Bramshill, UK, on the subject of international organized crime. Between January and September 2011, she was with the Geneva-based International Security Sector Advisory Team (ISSAT) of the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) designing, planning and delivering courses on SSR to senior practitioners. She also assisted with ISSAT bringing out its first online certified e-learning course on SSR in collaboration with UNITAR.
In 2009, she received the prestigious UK Chevening Fellowship. Prior to that, she received the coveted RCSS Mahab ul Haq Award for collaborative research in South Asia, and was a JNU-Ford Foundation exchange scholar and spent a semester at the University of Notre Dame, US.


Amal Jayawardane

Professor Amal Jayawardane is Emeritus Professor of International Relations, University of Colombo, and presently he serves as Senior Professor at the Faculty of Defence and Strategic Studies, Sir John Kotelawala Defence University. Previously he served as the Dean of the Faculty of Arts and the Head of the Department of International Relations, University of Colombo. He was also the sixth Executive Director of the Regional Centre for Strategic Studies (RCSS) in January, 2009. Formerly, he was the Dean of the Faculty of Arts (2006-2008) and the Head of the Department of History & International Relations (2001-2006), University of Colombo. He has also served as Visiting Professor at the School of International Service, the American University, Washington D.C., and Research Scholar at the Department of International Relations, London School of Economics and Political Science.
He has also functioned as a Consultant to the National Integration Programme Unit (NIPU) of the Ministry of Ethnic Affairs and National Integration; member of the Coordinating Committee, Centre for the Study of Human Rights (CSHR), University of Colombo; Co-Director, Centre for Policy Studies and Research (CEPRA), University of Colombo; Member of the Board of Directors, Institute of International Studies (IIS), Kandy; Member, Board of Management, Bandaranaike Centre For International Studies (BCIS) and the Sri Lanka Institute of International Relations (SLIIR). During the period 1994-1997, he served as a Member of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry in respect of Involuntary Removal and Disappearances of Persons. He specializes in Politics in South Asia; Foreign Policy Studies; Human Rights and Peace Studies.

Syed Rifaat Hussain (2005-2008) (2)

Syed Rifaat Hussain

Dr. Syed Rifaat Hussain is a professor of security studies in the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies at National Defence University, Islamabad, Pakistan. He was a visiting professor at CISAC for the 2012-2013 academic year.
Prior to taking up his current position, he was a professor and chairman of the Department of Defence and Strategic Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. Dr. Hussain also served as executive director of Regional Center for Strategic Studies (RCSS) Colombo, Sri Lanka from 2005 till 2008.
Dr. Hussain holds an M.A. and a Ph.D in International Studies from University of Denver, Colorado. His research interests include Pakistan’s foreign and security policies, South Asia security issues and theories of international relations.

Sridhar Khatri (2002-2005) (2)

Sridhar Khatri

Sridhar K. Khatri was the Executive Director of the South Asia Centre for Policy Studies (SACEPS) in Kathmandu, Nepal. Formerly, he was the Executive Director, Regional Centre for Strategic Studies (RCSS), Colombo, Sri Lanka, and Executive Director, Institute of Foreign Affairs, Kathmandu, Nepal. Prof. Khatri has taught and worked in various capacities at Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, for over 27 years. He has degrees from City College of New York and School of International Affairs, Columbia University, New York, and was a visiting scholar at the London School of Economics in 1989-1990.
Some of his edited volumes include: Regional Security in South Asia (Kathmandu: Centre for Nepal and Asian Studies, 1987); Political Parties and Parliamentary Process in Nepal: A Study of the Transitional Phase(Kathmandu: POLSAN); Energy Policy: National and Regional Implications (Kathmandu: CASAC, 2002). Co-edited volumes include: Terrorism in South Asia: Impact on Development and Democratic Process (New Delhi: Shipra Publishers, 2003); The Second Parliamentary Elections: A Study of the Emerging Democratic Process in Nepal(Kathmandu: IIDS, 1993); and South Asia 2010: Challenges and Opportunities (New Delhi: Manohar, 2002). University, New York, and was a visiting scholar at the London School of Economics in 1989–1990.

Dipankar Banerjee (1999-2002)

Dipankar Banerjee

Major General (Retd) Dipankar Banerjee, retired prematurely from the Indian Army after 36 years of active service in August 1996 including as commander in some of India’s wars. This was in order to devote full time efforts at strategic studies and disarmament. Before retiring he commanded an Infantry Division in Jammu & Kashmir at a critical period in the insurgency in 1991-92.
Over the last 27 years, even while on active service, he was involved with strategic planning at the national level. He was a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi from 1987-1990 and later its Deputy Director from 1992-96. Subsequently he was the founder and Co-Director of the autonomous think tank the Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies (IPCS), New Delhi from 1996 to 1999. From May 1999-2002 he was the Executive Director of the Colombo based South Asian think tank, Regional Centre for Strategic Studies. He next spent a year as a Jennings Randolph Fellow at the US Institute of Peace, Washington, DC before reverting as the Director and Head of the IPCS. During this period the IPCS emerged as a leading think tank on strategic and disarmament issues in all of Asia. In 2009 it won the coveted Prof Sondhi Award as the best strategic think tank in India.
Banerjee’s special areas of research interest are, India-China and India-Pak relations, confidence building measures, border security, China’s security and foreign policies, issues related to Indian security and disarmament, human security issues and security sector reforms. He has been a Consultant to the UN on the panel of the Group of Governmental Experts Conventional Arms and prepared its report to the Secretary General. He has published and lectured extensively on these subjects in books, periodicals and journals and appears often in national and international media. He travels frequently to China, Japan, Southeast Asia, the USA and Europe and participates in international strategic disarmament and CBM dialogues.

Iftekhar Zaman (1995-1999)

Iftekhar Zaman

Iftekhar Zaman served for four years from 1995 as Executive Director of the Regional Centre for Strategic Studies, Colombo, Sri Lanka, and before that worked with the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies for 19 years, as Senior Research Fellow and Research Director. He was also previously Executive Director of the Bangladesh Freedom Foundation (1999-2004). He worked for one year during 1989-1990 with the Department of International Relations of the University of Tokyo as a post-doctoral fellow. Dr. Zaman holds degrees from University of Dhaka and Academy of Economics, Warsaw.
Dr Zaman has been associated with a number of national, regional and international organizations and forums including the Washington DC-based Council on Foundations as chair of its international committee; Governing Council of the Manila-based Asia-Pacific Philanthropy Consortium (APPC) as Chair; New York-based Synergos Institute as a Senior Fellow, Brussels-based Worldwide Initiatives for Grantmaker Support (WINGS) as a member of the Coordinating Committee.
Dr Zaman’s main areas of interest are development, politics, security and cooperation in South Asia in general and Bangladesh in particular, on which he has published extensively in and outside Bangladesh. He is currently the Executive Director of Transparency International, Bangladesh.

Shelton Kodikara

Shelton Kodikara
(Founding Director)

The late Professor Shelton Kodikara was a co-founder of, and the first Executive Director of Regional Centre for Strategic Studies. He is considered a leading figure of International Studies in Sri Lanka and has held a number of important positions relating to diplomacy and strategic studies in addition to his academic posts.
He has been a senior lecturer in History and International Relations at the University of Peradeniya, as well as a visiting Professor in International Studies at Denver University; Colorado, American University; Washington D.C. and Florida International University; Miami in the United States. He has also been a visiting Professor at the South Asian Studies Centre at Rajasthan University in Jaipur, India. Professor Kodikara served as Sri Lanka’s Deputy High Commissioner in Madras from 1975-1977, and was a former council member of the Bandaranaike Centre for International Studies (BCIS).
Professor Kodikara has authored several books, including; Indo-Ceylon Relations since Independence, Foreign Policy of Sri Lanka: A Third World Perspective, Strategic Factors in Interstate Relations in South Asia. He also edited: Indo-Sri Lanka Agreement of July 1987, Dilemmas of Indo-Sri Lankan Relations, South Asian Strategic Issues: Sri Lanka Perspectives. His contribution to the study of foreign relations, particularly Indo-Sri Lanka relations remains highly significant.