Dr. K. Radhakrishnan; the current Chairman of Space Commission, Secretary, Department of Space, Government of India and Chairman of ISRO; is a technocrat par excellence; a dynamic and result-oriented Manager with very fine personal and inter-personal qualities; an astute Institution-builder with a strategic vision; an able Administrator with a positive attitude; and an inspiring Leader credited with nurturing leadership skills in the younger generation. He has had a distinguished career adorned with accomplishments that spans beyond 40 years in space technology, applications and space programme management.
Dr. Radhakrishnan was born on 29 August, 1949 at Irinjalakuda, Kerala. He graduated in Electrical Engineering from Kerala University (1970), completed his PGDM from IIM Bangalore (1976) and was awarded Doctorate for his thesis titled “Some Strategies for Indian Earth Observation System” from IIT Kharagpur (2000).
Starting his career as an Avionics Engineer in 1971 at ISRO’s Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Trivandrum; he commendably held several decisive positions in ISRO such as Project Director for setting up Regional Remote Sensing Centers (1987-89); Director of Budget & Economic Analysis for entire ISRO (1987-97); Director of National Natural Resources Management System-Regional Remote Sensing Service Centers (1989-97); Mission Director of Integrated Mission for Sustainable Development and Deputy Director of National Remote Sensing Agency (1997-2000); Director of National Remote Sensing Agency (2005-08); Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (2007-09); and Member, Space Commission (October 2008-October 2009)) with some responsibilities in concurrence. During 2000-05 he had a stint in the Ministry of Earth Sciences as the Founder Director of Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services and the first Project Director of Indian National Tsunami Warning System. He also held several important positions at the international level including Vice Chairman of Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (2001-05), Founder Chairman of Indian Ocean Global Ocean Observing System (2001-06) and Chairman of the Working Group of the Whole UN-COPUOS STSC (2008-2009).