This is Nitin Pai's cyberspace.

I have started writing occassional columns for Sakal, a leading Marathi newspaper.

contact: @acorn

I’m interested in coffee, philosophy, sharp objects, public policy, tech and stationery.
You are in the structured section of my domain where I have my blog posts, newspaper columns, updates on my teaching and research, and other things you had always been warned about.
My raw notes with thoughts-in-progress are in the unstructured digital garden.


▸ What I’m up to now.

This is a partial list. I’ll add the rest over the next few weeks. I recommend you check these out before looking at the stream of blog posts below ↓

▸ Recently been writing about: ☼ information ageliberal democracygeopoliticseconomicsCovid-19philosophy and everything else

▸ In these columns: ☼ Debates with my DaughtersMintSakalThe PrintThe HinduPragatiPax Indica

▸ And the blog posts follow:

This is where The Acorn blog now resides.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is marked by a big Chinese failure
February 24, 2022 // How Vladimir Putin jumped the gun and jeopardised Xi Jinping's global ambitions

How Russia and NATO are fighting an information war over Ukraine
February 14, 2022 // Major cyber offensives may be unlikely but information operations are in full swing

How can India become a global technological power?
February 13, 2022 // It is by being an indispensible part of the eco-system that will ensure India has both access to technology and, to some extent, the ability to control access to technology.

State administrative services are crucial to federalism
January 31, 2022 // More than transfers of elite civil servants, it the systemic inability of India’s states to recruit adequate numbers of public officials that is the bigger scandal

Major powers are extending their spheres of influence
January 23, 2022 // India must project both its power and its values to shape the new world order.

The co-evolution of genes and culture is revolutionizing policy
January 17, 2022 // Remembering Edward O. Wilson -- and how insights from evolutionary biology can explain how we got here and what we must do to be better

Open source is in India’s national interest
January 3, 2022 // India can limit the power of transnational technology firms and foreign governments by promoting open source software development.

Geopolitics of the Information Age
January 2, 2022 // It will be the objective of this column to discuss with you, dear reader, the geopolitics of the Information Age, and to chart the best course for India during this yuganta.

2021 - The Year in Fiction
December 31, 2021 // My favourite books of fiction of 2021

Interrogating the Deep State
December 22, 2021 // My conversation with Josy Joseph at the Bangalore Literature Festival

Insurgencies can be defeated by strengthening democratic and federal politics
December 20, 2021 // AFSPA is a red herring. Restructuring the Rajya Sabha will better address states' grievances

The contest to create the web’s third generation has intensified
December 6, 2021 // The internet is being reshaped by market rivalry, state control, geopolitics and a social backlash

We should support a global ban on destructive anti-satellite tests
November 22, 2021 // Reckless behaviour by as responsible a space power as Russia calls for action to preserve humanity's access to space

Cautious re-globalisation through bubbles of trust
November 12, 2021 // The Quad must take a strategic approach to economic interdependence and take a middle path between the extremes of technological sovereignty and laissez-faire globalisation

Decarbonisation will change geopolitics
November 8, 2021 // The global balance of power will shift before the world can change its outdated political structure. Therein lies the problem.

The unlikeliness of a directed microwave weapon
November 8, 2021 // I am not convinced that there is a directed electromagnetic energy weapon involved.

Reframing the social media policy debate
October 26, 2021 // The case for cognitive autonomy and to move from attempting "social media regulations" to "online social reform".

Amid the new US-China missile rivalry
October 25, 2021 // India must propose a Global No First Use Treaty to reduce risks while investing in space situational awareness & technological capabilities to secure itself

The coming regulation of social media is an opportunity for India
October 11, 2021 // India's competitive advantage in the tech economy has always been high quality human capital at scale. The challenge now is to create millions of people who can exercise good judgement in addition to writing great code.

On strategic autonomy
October 5, 2021 // Strategic autonomy is not about refusing to take sides in itself; but rather avoiding getting into situations where taking sides means losing the capacity for independent action.

Towards an Indian strategy for the Information Age
October 4, 2021 // Key points from the chapter in "India's Path to Power: Strategy in a World Adrift"

A strategy for India in a world adrift
September 28, 2021 // An analysis of India’s strategic path amidst tectonic external and domestic shifts by an independent group of leading policymakers, analysts and thinkers

India must invest in more sophisticated cyber weapons
September 27, 2021 // Without offensive cyber capabilities it is impossible to defend the nation's information sphere.



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