Arun Sukumar's Visiting Fellowship
Last month, Arun Sukumar joined us for a Visiting Fellowship at The Hague Program for Cyber Norms at Leiden University's The Hague Campus. We sat down with him to hear about his fellowship experience.
Arun Sukumar (@arunmsukumar) is a doctoral candidate at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. He is currently on leave from the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi, where he headed its Cyber Initiative (2015-2017). He was a Visiting Fellow within our Program from 31 October to 30 November 2018.
Why were you interested in coming here?
I wanted to use the visiting fellowship to refine my dissertation proposal, and interview international lawyers and political scientists in Europe, whose inputs would be helpful for the proposal, and whom I expect soon to be subjects of my experimental research!
What did you work on during your fellowship?
I made modest progress on the dissertation proposal, and hope to defend it early next year. The Hague Program on Cyber Norms and Leiden University offered me a valuable chance to run ideas by international lawyers and behavioural economists — experts in two disciplines I rely on heavily in my dissertation. My lecture, organised as part of the fellowship, was the best and most interactive part of the experience, and it was a pleasant surprise to see scholars from varied fields engaging an “interdisciplinary” issue - a much maligned word — with sincerity. This is not something one sees often in the halls of the academia.
What's next for you?
Concurrently, I am in the final stages of a book manuscript chronicling the political history of technology in India. (In fact, Leiden’s Wijnhaven Library was very helpful in sourcing some research material). The book, published by Penguin RandomHouse in India and Viking Press in the US, is out later next year. So the dissertation writing will be in abeyance until the manuscript is submitted!
Are you also interested to join our Visiting Fellowship Program? Applications are welcomed, reviewed and awarded year-round. Check out the Fellowships section for more information and the application process.