James Crabtree


James Crabtree is a Singapore-based author and journalist, and an Associate Professor of Practice at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.


His best-selling book, “The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India’s New Gilded Age”, was released in mid-2018. It was short-listed for the FT / McKinsey book of the year.


Prior to academia, James worked for the Financial Times, most recently leading coverage of Indian business as Mumbai bureau chief, between 2011 and 2016.


He is now a columnist for Nikkei Asian Review, and also a non-resident fellow at the Asia-Pacific programme at Chatham House.


At the Lee Kuan Yew School, James teaches graduate courses on leadership and communication, as well as the impact of the 2008 financial crisis. He is also a fellow at the school’s Centre on Asia and Globalisation.


Before joining the FT, James was a senior editor at Prospect, Britain’s leading monthly magazine of politics and ideas. He has written for a range of global publications, including the New York Times, the Economist, Wired, and Foreign Policy.


Prior to journalism, James was a senior policy advisor in the UK Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit under Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown.


He has worked for various think tanks in London and Washington DC, and spent a number of years living in America, initially as a Fulbright Scholar at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.



I am an associate Professor of Practice at the Lee Kuan Yew School. Here is my profile at the school.

I am an Associate Fellow of the Asia-Pacific Programme of Chatham House, the British foreign affairs think tank. Here is my profile at there.

I write a regular column for Nikkei Asian Review. You can see my articles here.  


In 2018, the Indian business newspaper Mint ran a profile about The Billionaire Raj. You can read that here.

While in India, I wrote a piece for the Financial Times about our family life in Mumbai. You can read that here. Or here.

Also while in India, I wrote another piece about the difficulties of moving our two Maine Coon cats, Eric and Leonard, between countries. You can read that here.

Finally, I once filmed a bit-part role in the Bollywood movie Kick, starring Salman Khan. My part sadly ended up on the cutting room floor, but I still wrote about the filming experience here.