Manjeet Pardesi

Dr Manjeet Pardesi profile picture

Senior Lecturer School of History, Philosophy, Political Science & International Relations


Teaching in 2020


  • BEng (NTU, Singapore)
  • MSc (NTU, Singapore)
  • PhD (Indiana University, Bloomington, USA)


Manjeet S. Pardesi is Senior Lecturer in the Political Science and International Relations Programme and Asia Research Fellow at the Centre for Strategic Studies at Victoria University of Wellington.

I obtained my PhD in Political Science from Indiana University, Bloomington (IUB).  I have an MSc in Strategic Studies from the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies (now the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies or RSIS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore.  I obtained my BEng (Electrical & Electronic) from NTU as well.  I am currently the Managing Editor of the journal Asian Security (June 2018—May 2021). (Twitter: @manjeetsp).

Research interests

I have two streams of research –
(1)IR in Global History – Given that IR theory has largely been derived from European history, how can we enrich IR theory based on Asian historical experiences, intra-Asian comparisons, and Asian-Western experiences?
(2)Contemporary Asian security issues, especially in the context of major power rivalries (the US-China-Japan-India relationship)
There are many common conceptual themes running across these two streams such as the creation, maintenance, and change of international order.
My PhD work focused on the initiation of strategic rivalries and their escalation to war. I used image theory to explain rivalry initiation, and prospect theory to explain crisis escalation (or non-escalation) to war. My substantive cases included the China-India rivalry, the US-China rivalry, and the US-Japan rivalry (before 1945).

Current research projects

I am currently working on revising my doctoral dissertation to convert it into a book manuscript.
In addition to this, I am also working on the following research papers:

“Balancing and Hegemony in ancient India (~550 BCE – 300 CE)”
(This paper seeks to explain why Aśokan hegemony emerged in ancient India and why it was short-lived (~260 BCE – 205 BCE). At the same time, I argue that the absence of hegemony (~200 BCE – 300 CE) did not lead to the creation of a balance of power system. I make the case for a mandala international order in ancient India that was de-centered, non-hegemonic, and did not practice systemic balancing. The mandala order was held together by ideas related to the management of power asymmetry).

“The Indian Ocean Trading System: Before (pre-1500) and After (~1500—1800) the Arrival of the Europeans” (with Amitav Acharya)
(This article argues that ‘local’ initiatives can create non-hegemonic trading systems without system-wide naval coercion).

“Power, Ideas, and International Orders: Comparing the Mediterranean with the Indian Ocean as Contrasting Sources of International Theory” (with Amitav Acharya)
(A comparison of the influence of Greece and Rome in the Mediterranean (8th century BCE – 4th century CE) with that of India and China in Southeast Asia/the Indian Ocean (4th century CE – 15th century CE) reveals that the “East” represented an open and non-hegemonic international order, while the “West” was closed and hegemonic).

“Competition or Cooperation: US Response to the Rise of China and India”
(Why does the incumbent system leader compete with some rising powers while cooperating with others? Cooperation is particularly difficult to explain because more power can lead to new interests that may clash with the system leader’s preferences).

“The East Asian Origin of the US-India Cold War Strategic Estrangement”
(Have collected archival material from the Truman and Eisenhower Libraries in the United States and the Nehru Memorial Museum & Library in India)

Select publications

Journal articles (and Peer-Reviewed Articles)

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Managing the 1986-87 Sumdorong Chu Crisis,” India Review (forthcoming).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The Indo-Pacific: A ‘New’ Region or the Return of History?,” Australian Journal of International Affairs (available online:, November 2019.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Mughal Hegemony and the Emergence of South Asia as a ‘Region’ for Regional Order-Building,” European Journal of International Relations Volume 25, Issue 1 (2019): 276-301.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Modi: From ‘Look East’ to ‘Act East’ – Semantic or Substantive Change,” International Studies Perspective Volume 20, Issue 1 (2019).

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Sumit Ganguly, “Violent Punjab, Quiescent Bengal, and the Partition of India,” Commonwealth and Comparative Politics Volume 57, Issue 1 (2019).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The Initiation of the Sino-Indian Rivalry,” Asian Security (forthcoming); available online at

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Region, System, and Order – The Mughal Empire in Islamicate Asia,” Security Studies Volume 26, Issue 2 (2017): 249-278.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Image Theory and the Initiation of Strategic Rivalries,” Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Politics edited by William R. Thompson (March 2017).  Available online: (DOI: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190228637.013.318).

Robert Ayson and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Asia’s Diplomacy of Violence: China-US Coercion and Regional Order,” Survival Volume 59, Issue 2 (2017): 85-124.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “American Global Primacy and the Rise of India,” AsiaPacific Issues No. 129 (March 2017). Available:

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “China’s Nuclear Forces and their Significance to India,” Nonproliferation Review Volume 21, Number 3/4 (2014): 337-354. (Published in September 2015).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Is India a Great Power: Understanding Great Power Status in Contemporary International Relations,” Asian Security Volume 11, Issue 1 (2015): 1-30. (Published as the lead article of the issue).

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Can China and India Rise Peacefully?,” Orbis Volume 56, Issue 3 (Summer 2012): 470-485

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India and Pakistan: The Origins of Their Different Politico-Military Trajectories,” India Review Volume 9, Issue 1 (January 2010): 38-67.

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Explaining Sixty Years of India’s Foreign Policy,” India Review Volume 8, Issue 1 (January 2009): 4-19.

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Jennifer L. Oetken, “Secularism, Democracy, and Hindu Nationalism in India,” Asian Security Volume 4, Number 1 (January-April 2008): 23-40.

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Ron Matthews, “India’s Tortuous Road to Defence-Industrial Self-Reliance,” Defense & Security Analysis Volume 23, Number 4 (December 2007): 419-438.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Review Essay: Understanding the Rise of India,” India Review Volume 6, Number 3 (July-September 2007): 209-231.

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India Rising: What is New Delhi to Do?,” World Policy Journal Volume XXIV, Number 1 (Spring 2007): 9-18.

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Sumit Ganguly, “The Rise of India and the India-Pakistan Conflict,” The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs Volume 31, Number 1 (Winter 2007): 131-145.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Unmanned Aerial Vehicles / Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles: Likely Missions and Challenges for the Policy-Relevant Future”, Air & Space Power Journal (of the United States Air Force) Volume XIX, No. 3 (Fall 2005): 45-54.


  • The ASPJ article was republished in USI Digest (The United Service Institution of India), Volume VIII, Number 15 (September 2005-February 2006): 66-88.
  • The ASPJ article was translated into Chinese and republished in the May 2006 issue of the Taiwanese journal National Defense Digest.  This is a monthly journal for military related personnel published by the History and Translation Division, Ministry of National Defense, Taiwan, Republic of China.
  • This paper was republished in February 2006 in Strategic Analysis, a compilation of papers from the Fisher Institute of Air and Space Strategic Studies (Founded by the Israeli Air Force Association), Herzlia, Israel.

Edited volumes

Sumit Ganguly, Nicolas Blarel, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, editors, The Oxford Handbook of India’s National Security (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2018).

Rajesh Basrur, Ajaya Kumar Das, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, editors, India’s Military Modernization: Challenges and Prospects (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2014).

Book chapters

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India’s Conventional Military Strategy,” in Sumit Ganguly, Nicolas Blarel, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, eds., The Oxford Handbook of India’s National Security (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2018).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “China and India: The Evolution of a Compound Rivalry,” in Sumit Ganguly, Andrew Scobell, and Joseph Chinyong Liow, eds., The Routledge Handbook of Asian Security Studies 2nd ed. (New York: Routledge, 2018).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Evolution of India-Japan Ties: Prospects and Limitations,” in Rajesh Basrur and Sumitha Kutty, eds., India and Japan: Assessing the Strategic Partnership (Singapore: Palgrave, 2018).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Order in South Asia and the Indian Ocean Region: Indian Hegemony or Indian Primacy,” in Alan Chong, ed., International Security in the Asia-Pacific: Transcending ASEAN Towards Transitional Polycentrism (Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018).

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Modi’s China Policy – Change or Continuity?,” in Sinderpal Singh, ed., Modi and the World: (Re)Constructing of Indian Foreign Policy (Singapore: World Scientific, 2017): 3-24.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The US-China-India Strategic Triangle,” in Bo Zhiyue, ed., China-US Relations in Global Perspective (Wellington: Victoria University Press, 2016): 240-248.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Is India a South Asian or an Asian Power?,” in Knut A. Jacobsen, ed., Routledge Handbook on Contemporary India (London: Routledge, 2016), 135-145.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India’s China Policy,” in Sumit Ganguly, ed., India’s Foreign Policy (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2016), 167-194.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India’s Relations with Japan and South Korea,” in Sumit Ganguly, ed., India’s Foreign Policy (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2016), 303-325.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “China-India: Aksai Chin and Arunachal Pradesh Plateaus,” in Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, ed., Border Disputes: A Global Encyclopedia, Volume 2 – Positional Disputes (Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, 2015), 539-549.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The Indian Navy’s Doctrinal Evolution,” in Harsh Pant, ed., Handbook of Indian Defence Policy (New Delhi: Routledge, 2015), 206-218.

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Foreign Policy Analysis in India,” in Valerie Hudson and Klaus Brummer, eds., FPA Outside North America (Lynne Rienner, 2015), 57-76.

Rajesh Basrur, Ajaya Kumar Das, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Introduction,” in Rajesh Basrur, Ajaya Kumar Das, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, editors, India’s Military Modernization: Challenges and Prospects (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2014), 1-21.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The Indo-US Defense Relationship: Prospects and Limitations,” in Rajesh Basrur, Ajaya Kumar Das, and Manjeet S. Pardesi, editors, India’s Military Modernization: Challenges and Prospects (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2014), 230-258.

Nicolas Blarel and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India,” in Richard Sobel, Peter Furia, and Bethany Barratt, eds., Public Opinion and International Intervention: Lessons from the Iraq War (Washington, D.C.: Potomac Books, 2012), 187-199.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India in Asia: India’s Relations with Southeast Asia and China, 1962-1991,” in Andreas Hilger and Corinna Unger, eds., India in the World: National and Transnational Perspectives, 1947-1991 (Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang, 2012), 15-34.

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Sumit Ganguly, “The Indian Elephant,” in Donette Murray and David Brown, eds., Multipolarity in the 21st Century: A New World Order (London: Routledge, 2012), 131-160.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Instability in Tibet and the Sino-Indian Strategic Rivalry: Do Domestic Politics Matter?,” in Sumit Ganguly and William R. Thompson, eds., Asian Rivalries: Conflict, Escalation, and Limitations on Two-level Games (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2011), 79-117.

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Politico-Economic and Radical Islamic Challenges to Democracy in Asia,” in Ashley J Tellis, Andrew Marble, and Travis Tanner, eds., Strategic Asia 2010-11: Asia’s Rising Power and America’s Continued Purpose (Seattle: National Bureau of Asian Research, 2010), 278-302.

Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “South Asia and Foreign Policy,” in Robert A. Denemark, eds., The International Studies Encyclopedia, Volume X (Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010), 6497-6514.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Southeast Asia in Indian Foreign Policy: Positioning India as a Major Power in Asia,” in Sumit Ganguly, ed., India’s Foreign Policy: Retrospect and Prospect (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2010), 106-131.

Manjeet S. Pardesi and Sumit Ganguly, “India and Energy Security: A Foreign Policy Priority,” in Harsh Pant, ed., Indian Foreign Policy in a Unipolar World (New Delhi: Routledge, 2009), 99-127.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Unmanned Aerial Vehicles: Missions, Challenges, and Implications for Small and Medium Powers,” in Bernard Loo, ed., Military Transformation and Strategy: Revolutions in Military Affairs and Small States (London: Routledge, 2009), 101-113.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Nuclear Optimism and the 1990 India-Pakistan Crisis,” in Sumit Ganguly and S Paul Kapur, eds., Nuclear Proliferation in South Asia: Crisis behavior and the Bomb (New York: Routledge, 2009), 59-75.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The Battle for the Soul of Pakistan at Islamabad’s Red Mosque,” in C Christine Fair and Sumit Ganguly, eds., Treading on Hallowed Ground: Counterinsurgency Operations in Sacred Spaces (New York: Oxford University Press, 2008), 88-116.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “The India-China Border,” in Clinton Fernandes, ed., Hot Spot: Asia and Oceania(Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2008), 67-89.


Sumit Ganguly and Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Prospects for India’s Energy and Geopolitical Roles in the Middle East,” in The New Energy Silk Road: The Growing Asia-Middle East Nexus (NBR Conference Report, The National Bureau of Asian Research, October 2009), 29-39. Available:

  • Reprinted under the same title in Mikkal E. Herberg, Energy Security and the Asia-Pacific (Seattle: The National Bureau of Asian Research, 2014), 254-267.

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “Counterterrorism Cooperation with the United States and Japan: An Indian Perspective,” in Bridging Strategic Asia (Complete Report): The United States, Japan, and India, edited by Derek Mitchell (Washington, D.C.: Center for Strategic and International Studies, 2009), 255-268. Available:

Manjeet S. Pardesi et. al.Energy and Security: The Geopolitics of Energy in the Asia-Pacific, POLICY PAPER of the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies, Singapore, October 2006. Available:

Manjeet S. Pardesi, “India - The History of Security Concepts and Ideas,” in Desmond Ball, Anthony Miller, and Nicholas Farrelly, eds., Languages of Security in the Asia Pacific. Available:


Teaching in 2020