Polling Observatory #35 : Politics, Fast and Slow

  This is the thirty-fifth in a series of posts that report on the state of the parties as measured by opinion polls. By pooling together all the available polling evidence we can reduce the impact of the random variation each individual survey inevitably produces. Most of the short term advances and setbacks in party […]

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The Indian Elections: A perspective from Pakistan

  Elections in the largest democracy of the world are a distant and hardly audible soundbeat for its Western neighbour Pakistan. There is a relatively mute response to the cacophony of political slogans, ideological discourses and contradictory positions on public policy. All this points to gross reductionism that has traditionally barred Pakistanis from understanding the […]

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The Making of Narendra Modi

  Three personalities loom large in the upcoming general elections in India: Rahul Gandhi, Narendra Modi, and Arvind Kejriwal. The rise of new and first generation politicians like Narendra Modi and Arvind Kejriwal, could modify the post-1989 trend towards dynastic politics, national prominence of regional parties, and the role played by state-level dynamics. This post […]

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Pre-electoral coalitions in 2014

  India has had seven consecutive elections (1989 to 2009) in which no single party won a majority of seats in the Lok Sabha, resulting in hung parliaments. In 1991, the Congress formed a single-party minority government (which achieved a majority half-way through its term) but in all other cases minority coalitions dependent on outside […]

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“Proxy Warfare” By Andrew Mumford

Proxy wars represent a perennial strand in the history of conflict. The appeal of ‘warfare on the cheap’ has proved an irresistible strategic allure for nations through the centuries. However, proxy wars remain a missing link in contemporary war and security studies. In this timely book Andrew Mumford sheds new light on the dynamics and […]

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Colonial Narratives and Crawling Black Ants: Encountering Lady Dufferin

    As a visiting research fellow at the Centre for the Study of Social and Global Justice at the School of Politics and IR in February of this year I had a chance encounter with Lady Dufferin, Hariot Hamilton-Temple-Blackwood. A fellow traveller, but one that lived and died long ago, from 1843 to 1936 […]

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Is “Programmatic Politics” Possible in the Absence of Party Programmes? Assessing the Alleged Demise of Patronage Politics in India

  India’s national election campaign is in full swing.  The outcome will not be known until mid-May, when the multi-stage, region-by-region voting process is complete.  The first voters head to the polls on April 7th, less than a week from today.  Unfortunately, they may have to decide whom to vote for without knowing the detailed […]

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Aiming to defy gravity – the Aam Aadmi Party in the 2014 Indian Elections

The 2014 Indian election sees the arrival in national politics of a new political party – the Aaam Aadmi Party (AAP, or Party of the Common Man).  The AAP emerged from the mass anti-corruption movement, which mobilized huge demonstrations in 2011 and 2012 against the ineffectiveness of governance and the political scandals that have rocked […]

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Tomlinson Lecture 2013 – Craig Murray, Misunderstanding Central Asia – Deliberately!

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Mara Malagodi, The Making of New Nepal (IAPS)

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