Ambassador Bilahari Kausikan is currently Chairman of the Middle East Institute, an autonomous institute of the National University of Singapore, and Ambassador-at-Large in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore. From 2001 to May 2013, Amb. Kausikan was first the second Permanent Secretary and subsequently Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He previously served in a variety of appointments, including Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York and Ambassador to the Russian Federation. Amb. Kausikan is a graduate of Raffles Institution, the University of Singapore and Columbia University in New York.