Vikas Kumar

Areas of Interest & Expertise

  • Political Economy of Statistics
  • Law and Economics
  • Economics of Religion
  • Indian History


Vikas studied metallurgy at Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT Kanpur), Uttar Pradesh (B Tech 2001) and economics at Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research (IGIDR), Mumbai (PhD, 2010) and the University of Hamburg (Doctoral fellow, 2007-08). 

He worked with Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, New Delhi and Trichy, and later National Law School of India University (NLSIU), Bengaluru, where he taught Law, Economics, and Religion and Introduction to Game Theory, before joining Azim Premji University. 

His research explores the interfaces between politics and statistics, economics and religion, Kauṭilya’s Arthasastra, and other pre-modern texts.

He curated the exhibition Baba Saheb: An Extraordinary Philatelic Journey (19662022) at the India International Centre, New Delhi (June 2022) and Counting and Controlling Population: Postal Services, Census & Family Planning in Post-colonial India, 1951 – 2011 at Bangalore International Centre (BIC), Bengaluru (January 2023).

His recent publications include Numbers as Political Allies: The Census in Jammu and Kashmir (Cambridge University Press, 2023), Waiting for a Christmas Gift: Essays on Politics, Elections and Media in Nagaland (Heritage Publishing House, 2023) and Numbers in India’s Periphery: The Political Economy of Government Statistics (Cambridge University Press, 2020, co-authored).