Great Power Politics

UNSW Canberra Academics Involved: 
Dr Ashok Sharma

The relationship between China and other major economies has been under the spotlight for the last decade. Less focus has been offered to India, which may well have more influence on the global balance over the coming decade.  

“India is very different to China, it is a Commonwealth nation and a democracy and a very strong partner of the USA,” Dr Ashok Sharma, Visiting Fellow at UNSW explains. “It is aligned with America on security and defence. It is behind China economically but over the next 20 to 30 years it will become bigger than China. We don’t hear as much about this because India is not a security concern.”  

Sharma’s work revolves around ‘Great Power Politics’, and particularly the relationship between India and the USA. Of course, this also offers a unique point of view on how developments in India are also affecting Australia and other territories in our neighbourhood. When Indian Australians are the second biggest taxpayers in our nation, after British Australians, the importance of the relationship is clear and powerful.  

More specifically, Sharma deeply investigates ethnic lobbying in US foreign policy, three-way relations between the US, China and India, and US-India foreign, security and defence policy in South Asian and Asia-Pacific security dynamics.  

Such research naturally lends itself to the promotion of knowledge around the Quadrilateral Alliance in the Asia-Pacific region, India's domestic politics, foreign and defence policies and India’s relationship with Australia, encompassing international security and conflict, and particularly terrorism, nuclear and energy security.  

Sharma shares his knowledge with his audience – typically the academic, diplomatic and policy-level political communities – through papers, reports for particular bodies, conference and seminar presentations and articles in popular media.  

In demand globally, Sharma is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Canberra where he is the Head of South Asia Strategic, Security and State Fragile Program. He is also the Conjoint Head of Indo-Pacific Studies and Major Powers Program at the National Asian Studies Centre, and Deputy Chair of the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs, Auckland.