India: The Next Superpower?
India’s rise constitutes one of the most fascinating and important stories of the past two
decades, symbolising, along with China, the fundamental shift of power towards Asia. Yet
while many acknowledge India’s newfound importance, the country remains one of the most misunderstood actors in the international community. During the Cold War, India was the only democratic regime that did not align with the West. After becoming a nuclear power in 1998, the country suffered international condemnation, only to become one of the United States’ key strategic partners less than ten years later. While international analysts have traditionally looked at India primarily through the prism of the conflict with Pakistan, today it is routinely analysed in the context of a rising China. Neither viewpoint can do justice to India’s much more important and complex role in the 21st century. The need to understand India’s perspectiv e has never been greater, and today no global challenge – be it climate change, nuclear proliferation or poverty reduction – can be tackled successfully without India’s active contribution and engagement