“I use ‘disruptive’ in both its good and bad connotations. Disruptive scientific and technological progress is not to me inherently good or inherently evil. But its arc is for us to shape. Technology’s progress is furthermore in my judgment unstoppable. But it is quite incorrect that it unfolds inexorably according to its own internal logic and the laws of nature.”
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Rich Verma is Vice Chairman and Partner at The Asia Group, a leading strategic and business advisory firm headquartered in Washington DC. He previously served as the U.S. Ambassador to India from 2014 to 2017, where he led one of the largest U.S. diplomatic missions and championed historic progress in bilateral cooperation on defense, trade, and clean energy. As a Senior Non-Resident Fellow at Belfer, Ambassador Verma will focus on American diplomacy, key developments in Asia, and US national security policy.
Ambassador Verma was previously the Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs, and also served for many years as the Senior National Security Advisor to the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. He was a member of the WMD and Terrorism Commission and a co-author of their landmark report, “World at Risk.” He is a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, and his military decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal.
In addition to his role at The Asia Group, Ambassador Verma is a Senior Fellow at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service and Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. The Ambassador also co-chairs the Center for American Progress’ U.S.-India Task Force, which has charted an actionable bilateral agenda to deepen U.S.-India ties. He also serves on a number of boards and commissions, including the National Endowment for Democracy, the U.S.-India Strategic Partnership Forum, Malaria No More, Lehigh University, the MGM Public Policy Institute, Paladin Capital Strategic Advisory Group, and the T. Rowe Price corporate board.
Ambassador Verma is the recipient of the State Department’s Distinguished Service Award, the Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellowship, the Chief Justice John Marshall Lifetime Achievement Award, and was ranked by India Abroad as one of the 50 most influential Indian Americans. He holds degrees from the Georgetown University Law Center (LLM), American University’s Washington College of Law (JD), and Lehigh University (BS).