Ambassador Kishan S. Rana was educated at St Stephens College, Delhi University and holds a BA (Honors) and an MA in Economics (First Division). He joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1960, retiring in 1995. He served as ambassador to Algeria, Czechoslovakia, Kenya, Mauritius, and Germany; Joint Secretary in Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s Office (1981–1982); and head of personnel administration in the Ministry of External Affairs. Foreign languages: Chinese and French.

In 1999 he joined the e-learning teaching faculty of DiploFoundation and was named Professor Emeritus by Diplo in 2010. In 1999, he published his first book, Inside Diplomacy, a critical examination of how the Indian diplomatic system should be improved. That prompted a major reform initiative and was followed by: Managing Corporate Culture (co-author, 2000); Bilateral Diplomacy (2002); The 21st Century Ambassador (2004); Asian Diplomacy (2007); Foreign Ministries (co-editor, 2007); Economic Diplomacy (co-editor, 2011); Diplomacy of the Twenty-first Century (2011); and The Contemporary Embassy (2013). Currently working on two books, he has published 80 articles on current affairs in academic and other journals.

He served as a Commonwealth Adviser to the Namibia Foreign Ministry for six months, (2000–2001), and has advised the foreign ministries of Botswana and Kenya. Other posts: Honorary Fellow, Institute of Chinese Studies, Delhi; Archives By-Fellow, Churchill College, Cambridge; Public Policy Scholar, Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington DC, 2005; Distinguished Fellow, Institute of Diplomacy and Foreign Relations, Kuala Lumpur.

He is a regular guest lecturer at the China Foreign Affairs University, Beijing, and at Bahrain. He is on the guest faculty of the Diplomatic Academy, Vienna; has conducted training programmes at Armenia, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Iran, Kenya, Malaysia, Namibia, the Netherlands, Oman, Russia, Singapore, Suriname, Switzerland, Thailand, and Trinidad and Tobago. Amb. Rana has produced three distance programmes for the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade in a self-learning format; subsequently, the British Foreign Office adapted one of these.