My research broadly covers the development of societies, especially sectarian communities, in Central Asia, the Near East, and South Asia studied through interdisciplinary approaches involving history, religious studies, international affairs, politics, anthropology, archeology, language, literature, and numismatics. I focus specifically on Iranian and Persian Studies, Indian subcontinental studies, Zoroastrianism, Islam, and Manichaeism. I have conducted fieldwork in Iran, UAE, Pakistan, India, and Sri Lanka among other countries. I have served on fellowship evaluation and selection committees for the American Councils for International Education, Mary Ingraham Bunting Institute of Harvard University, Canada Council for the Arts, Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, Center for Arabic Study Abroad of Georgetown University and Johns Hopkins University, IREX, and Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada. I have functioned as a nominator for the MacArthur Fellows Program, been consulted by UNESCO, United States Department of Education, and the National Geographic Society. My analyses appear in Foreign Policy, World Politics Review, Real Clear World,Christian Science Monitor, National Review, NPR, Radio Liberty, Huffington Post, and ABC News among other policy journals and news media.At present I am a U.S. Presidentially-nominated and U.S. Congressionally-confirmed Member of the National Council on the Humanities which oversees the National Endowment for the Humanities in Washington, DC.