Research Programme – University of Copenhagen

Research Programme - Nation in Motion: Globalisation, Development and Governance in ‘New India'

This interdisciplinary research program concerns the nature, effects and fragilities of India's imminent global ‘rise'. Through three integrated studies on recent development interventions and new governing practices, we explore different processes of globalization that are shaping ‘new' India within and how India itself is being projected outside as a global power. The program will generate fresh empirical data from two locations in urban Delhi and rural West Bengal in order to map out the historical and contemporary patterns of inequality emerging in the making of global India, and the ways in which they are leveled, projected and even subverted on a global scale. Theoretically we wish to break fresh ground in the interface of globalization and nation-state by showing how the ‘global' nation is manufactured in specific locations, and how a new species of relations conjugate the nation and the state in a global context.

The programme is funded by the Danish Social Sciences Research Council for the period 2009-2013. The project is coodinated by Associate Professor Ravinder Kaur.

Individual Project Descriptions

National Formations, Cultural Histories

This project explores the ways in which the nation is transformed into commodity form, and how is it mediated as a global power by the Indian state. It also explores the new species of relations between the nation and the state and how national culture and commerce are realigning in a neoliberal political order.

This project concerns self-perceptions of the rural dispossessed in terms of governmental and non-governmental initiatives of poverty alleviation and their engagement with different political forces. This is an investigation of the relatively less explored aspect of rural poverty from two distinctive angles: one, between global private capital and local state government; and two, between international development agencies, spearheaded by NGOs, and local rural displaced.