Expert on Indian foreign policy to speak Monday at IU Bloomington

India has a new government and a controversial new leader, and the combination has raised speculation about the direction of foreign policy in the world’s largest democracy. That makes a program Monday at Indiana University Bloomington especially timely.

David Malone, the rector of United Nations University and under-secretary-general of the U.N., will speak on “Evolving Relationships in India’s Foreign Policy.” The talk, at 4:30 p.m. in the Moot Court Room of the Maurer School of Law, is free and open to the public.

David Malone

David Malone

“Dr. Malone is a noted authority on India’s foreign policy, and he is an engaging, compelling and knowledgeable speaker,” said IU political scientist Sumit Ganguly, director of the Center on American and Global Security, which is sponsoring the talk. “Anyone with an interest in India and its role in international affairs is strongly encouraged to attend.”

Malone served as Canada’s high commissioner to India and its nonresident ambassador to Bhutan and Nepal from 2006-08. His 2011 book, “Does the Elephant Dance? Contemporary Indian Foreign Policy,” garnered widespread attention for its analysis of whether India was likely to become a global power or content itself with being a regional power in South Asia.

Questions about India’s international relations and foreign policy have come to the forefront with the victory of the nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party in this year’s parliamentary contests and the election of party leader Narendra Modi as prime minister. Some observers expect a “realist” approach informed by Indian nationalism and geo-economic concerns.

Malone joined the United Nations University in March 2013 as its sixth rector. Previously, he was president of Canada’s International Development Research Center, a funding agency that supports research in the developing world. He also has served as Canada’s representative to the U.N. Economic and Social Council and ambassador and deputy permanent representative to the U.N.

He has held research positions at the Brookings Institution, University of Toronto and Carleton University and has been a guest scholar at Columbia University and an adjunct professor at the New York University School of Law.

The lecture is co-sponsored by the IU School of Global and International Studies.

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