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Sino-Indian Relations in the 21st Century: Economic and Security Implications

Dr. Tsering Topgyal

Thursday, July 10, 2014 from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM (BST)

Sino-Indian Relations in the 21st Century: Economic...

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This event is organised under the aegis of the POLSIS Asia Research Group and funded by POLSIS, the China Institute, University of Birmingham India Travel Fund and the College of Social Sciences Matched India Travel Fund.

While a great deal of attention has been focused on the security competition between China, America and Japan, the rivalry between India and China has received less academic treatment in the West. Relations between India and China have been lukewarm even at the best of times ever since China absorbed Tibet (1949-1950). Their simultaneous rise in the 21st Century has been characterised by rhetorical bonhomie, booming, albeit unequal, economic exchanges and occasional cooperation in global multilateral fora on the one hand. On the other hand, economic, strategic and diplomatic rivalry is a defining feature of their relationship. Relations between Beijing and New Delhi remain constrained by their protracted border dispute, reciprocal fears of developments on the Tibetan plateau, arms race and military build-ups, rivalry in regional and global institutions, economic competition for resources and markets as well as diplomatic struggles. These give rise to mutual fears of strategic encirclement, which are played out in their relations with the countries in their shared neighbourhood and beyond. The future of India-China relations will be as consequential to everyone as US-China or China-Japan relations. This conference brings together leading scholars from China, India and the UK to address the following questions: what are the key drivers of Sino-Indian relations, particularly their economic and security relations? What are the cooperative and competitive elements in their economic and security strategies towards their Asian neighbours and beyond? What kind of regional and extra-regional responses are provoked by the increasing capabilities and expanding ambitions and activities of these rising powers?

Directions to the venue: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/contact/directions/index.aspx


9.30-9.50am:      Tea/Coffee

9.50-10am:         Introductory remarks by Dr. Tsering Topgyal

                            Welcome by Professor David Dunn, Head of  the Department of 

                            Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS)

10-12am:            Panel One: Simultaneous Rise and Bilateral Relations

                            Chair: Tsering Topgyal 

Professor Du Youkang (Fudan University, China):  “Simultaneous Rise of China & India and Their Bilateral Relations”

Professor Madhu Bhalla (Delhi University, India): "India-China relations: the return of the sub-region"

Professor William A. Callahan (London School of Economics): "Chinese-Indian Encounters: From Strategic Studies to Fine Arts"

12-1pm:              Lunch

1-3pm                 Panel Two: Regional Implications and Responses

                            Chair: Julie Gilson

 Professor Harsh Pant (Kings College London): "China, India and the Asian Multipolarity"

Professor Srikanth Kondapalli (Jawaharlal Nehru University, India): “India-China Competition in South East Asia”

 Dr.Tsering Topgyal (University of Birmingham): "South Asian Responses to China’s Rise: Indian and Nepalese Handling of the Tibet Issue"

3-3.30pm             Tea/Coffee

3.30- 5.30pm       Roundtable: The Simultaneous Rise of China and India and the West

                             Chair: Tsering Topgyal

Madhu Bhalla

Srikanth Kondapalli

Du Youkang 

William A. Callahan

David Dunn

Harsh Pant

Adam Quinn

5.30-5.40pm        Closing Remarks

About the Speakers

Madhu Bhalla is currently professor in Chinese studies at the Department of East Asian Studies, Delhi University. She has an M.A. and Ph.D. from Queen’s University, Canada. Before joining Delhi University in 2005 she taught at the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and Queens’ University, Canada. Her teaching and research interests lie in the areas of Chinese security and foreign policy, the political economy of China, United States’ foreign policy and international relations theory. She has published academic papers in these areas and contributed several book chapters to edited volumes and has a book in press on China’s foreign economic policy. She is currently researching a project on the prospects and challenges for cooperative security between India and China. Madhu Bhalla has held a visiting fellowship at the Fudan University, Shanghai and has been a visiting scholar at the University of Sichuan at Chengdu. She has served on the governing bodies of Delhi University’s constituent colleges, has been on the executive council of the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis, New Delhi (2006-2010) and is currently member of the Academic Advisory Committees of three of India’s newest centres of China studies. As Steering Committee member she is actively engaged with the Ministry of Culture’s Mausam Project for which she is coordinating the thrust on Great Centres of Learning in the Indian Ocean littoral.


William A. Callahan is Professor and Chair of International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science where he teaches courses on China, Asia and the World. His research explores links between identity and security, cultural and politics, and civil society and policymaking. His most recent books are 'China Dreams: 20 Visions of the Future' (2013), 'China Orders the World: Normative Soft Power and Foreign Policy (co-edited, 2011) and 'China: The Pessoptimist Nation' (2013). His current research project examines Chinese and Indian views of the 21st Century.

Julie Gilson is a Senior Lecturer in Japanese Studies at the University of Birmingham. She has written extensively on Japanese foreign policy, East Asian regionalism, Asia-Europe relations and civil society in Asia.


Srikanth Kondapalli is Professor in Chinese Studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University. He was Chairman of the Centre for East Asian Studies, SIS, JNU twice from 2008 to 2010 and 2012 to 2014. He is educated in Chinese studies in India and China with a Ph.D. in Chinese Studies. He learnt Chinese language at Beijing Language & Culture University and was a post-Doctoral Visiting Fellow at People’s University, Beijing from 1996-98. He was a Visiting Professor at National Chengchi University, Taipei in 2004, a Visiting Fellow at China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, Beijing in May 2007, an Honorary Professor at Shandong University, Jinan in 2009, 2011 and 2013 and a Fellow at Salzburg Global Seminar in 2010. He wrote two books (China’s Military: The PLA in Transition in 1999 & China’s Naval Power in 2001), two monographs, co-edited three volumes (Asian Security & China in 2004; China and its Neighbours in 2010 & China’s Military and India in 2012) and a number of articles in journals and edited volumes – all on China. He received the K.Subramanyam Award in 2010 for Excellence in Research in Strategic and Security Studies.

Harsh V. Pant is Professor of International Relations in the Defence Studies Department at King’s College London.  He is also an Associate at the Centre for Science and Security Studies and the India Institute at King’s College London.  He is also an Adjunct Fellow with the Wadhwani Chair in US-India Policy Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, DC. He has been a Visiting Professor at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore; a Visiting Fellow at the Center for the Advanced Study of India, University of Pennsylvania; a Visiting Scholar at the Center for International Peace and Security Studies, McGill University; an Emerging Leaders Fellow at the Australia-India Institute, University of Melbourne;and a Visiting Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi.  His current research is focused on Asian security issues. His most recent books include The China Syndrome (HarperCollins), The US-India Nuclear Pact: Policy, Process and Great Power Politics (Oxford University Press), and The Rise of China: Implications for India (Cambridge University Press). Pant writes regularly for various media outlets including the Japan Times, the Wall Street Journal, the National (UAE), and the Indian Express.

Adam Quinn is is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in International Politics at the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security (ICCS) and Dept of Political Science and International Studies, University of Birmingham.  He is currently the leader of an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) seminar series on ‘The Future of American Power’, and was convenor of the US Foreign Policy group of the British International Studies Association 2008-12. His primary area of interest is American grand strategy, especially the relationship between America's relative power in the international system and its internal ideological debates over foreign policy. He is also interested in International Relations theory, especially realist approaches.


Du Youkang  is currently professor and director of the Center for South Asian Studies and director of Pakistan Study Centre at Fudan University, Shanghai. Prior to this position, he worked at the Shanghai Institute for International Studies as research fellow, senior fellow and director of Department of South Asian Studies from 1984 to 2001, and then joined the Chinese Embassy in Islamabad as First Secretary (political) until 2005 as well as deputy head of Political Section of the Chinese Embassy in New Delhi (2008-2010). He is also a member of Standing Council of the China Association for South Asian Studies and Chairman of the Academic Committee of Pakistan Research Center in Sichuan Province, China. Prof. Du’s research interests cover South Asian regional security, US policy toward South Asia, and China-South Asia relations, with a large number of publications on those issues. His current projects include “Evolution of US Policy Toward South Asia in the Post-Cold War Era” and “Relations Between China and Indiain the Process of Their Simultaneous Rise”. Prof. Du was a visiting scholar at IEAS, UC Berkeley (1992-93) and visiting fellow at the Henry L. Stimson Center, Washington, DC (1998).


Tsering Topgyal is Lecturer in International Relations in the Department of Political Science and International Studies, University of Birmingham. He completed his PhD at the London School of Economics (LSE) in 2012. In 2012-2013, Tsering was a Teaching Fellow in International Relations at Royal Holloway, University of London, where he taught Chinese foreign policy and International Relations. Tsering's research and teaching interests include Chinese foreign and security policy with special attention to its ethnic conflicts, Asia-Pacific security and politics, Sino-Indian relations, and the Sino-Tibetan conflict. He has published articles in peer-reviewed journals like Pacific Affairs, Politics and Religion Journal, Journal of Contemporary China and China Report. Tsering’s book China and Tibet: The Perils of Insecurity will be published by Hurst and Oxford University Press in December 2014.

Have questions about Sino-Indian Relations in the 21st Century: Economic and Security Implications? Contact Dr. Tsering Topgyal

When & Where

G15 Muirhead Tower
Edgbaston Campus
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT Birmingham
United Kingdom

Thursday, July 10, 2014 from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM (BST)

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Dr. Tsering Topgyal

Lecturer in International Relations, Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS).

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Sino-Indian Relations in the 21st Century: Economic and Security Implications
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