SPONSORED ONGOING PROJECTS
1. Assessment of the Current Status of Rural Health in India and facilitating improvement in access to Health Services: A Case Example (Sponsored by Central Bank of India)
2. Identity Construction through Textual representations: A Study of Narratives in Bangladesh School Textbooks (Sponsored by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Kolkata)
3. Process and System View of the Public Health Care System in Urban India (Sponsored by Indian Council of Medical Research, New Delhi)
4.The Mekong-Ganga Co-operation Initiative: Institutionalizing a Co-operation Regime (Sponsored by Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies, Kolkata)
PROJECTS AND PROGRAMMES IN PROGRESS
India's Foreign Policy- Exploration in a World of Contestation
The project attempts to analyse the different aspects of Indian foreign policy from decision making to implementation; from basic principles to contemporary challenges. It is an attempt to understand how far India's global emergence can be cooperative or competitive or more rationally a combination of the two. The essential linkage between India and the global playing field is its foreign policy with specific economic, political and strategic objectives. The project seeks to make a qualitative contribution to this linkage so that national interest can be realised while contributing to international stability.
India's Look-East Policy: The Next Steps
The project on India's Look East Policy aims to determine the content, rationale, progression and determinants of the renewed emphasis on the east by the country. The project would build up on the series of pro active policies and measures undertaken in recent years to this end and proposes to examine these and the interlinkages involved. Necessarily, different components - economic, political and security - would be delved into and analysed with reference to the bilateral and regional context of the undertaking. A special emphasis would be on the many different and still evolving frameworks of bilateral and multilateral cooperative endeavours. The place and role of the North Eastern region of the country in the making and success of the Look East Policy would also be examined. Still another component of the project would be to establish and institutionalise Track II interaction with credible and reputed institutions and organisations in all the countries to the east of India. Look East Policy as a vital adjunct to India's emerging strategic policy would be analysed.
SAARC in the 21st Century: Shared Opportunity, Shared Responsibility
The logic of neighbourhood existence and largely common historical links among the countries of South Asian Region provide beneficial conditions for cooperation in the region. Piecemeal cooperation in specific sectors at the regional level however has fallen short of much-preferred receptivity of these positive impulses. Cooperation in the region on the contrary faces numerous challenges. States of South Asia are placed in a historically unique situation, where the processes of state formation, industrialisation, democratisation and interdependence have synchronised and instead of greater collaboration have made problems of adjustment and adaptation difficult. The dilemmas and contradictions inherent in South Asian cooperation have resulted from the simultaneous impact of the transformative forces independently pursued by the states.
Given India’s regional profile, the country is expected to shoulder important responsibilities for fostering cooperation in South Asia. The 14th SAARC Summit is historic in more than one way. For the first time the group has expanded its membership, to include Afghanistan as a permanent member and five other countries as Observers. The Summit Declaration made at Dhaka emphasised that the Organisation had now entered the ‘implementation phase’. India’s chairmanship of SAARC assumes a critical connotation given the expansion of the Organisation’s agenda and membership.
In an attempt to give expression to these multiple concerns the Global India Foundation in seeks to provide a platform for open discussion and interaction among the major stakeholders in the process of regional cooperation in South Asia. The project also seeks to work out the benefits of various regional projects and prioritise programmes so that policy makers can take more informed decisions. Such professional interaction and research can help create the required public opinion, and convince the skeptics, so that Governments are better empowered in pursuing new initiatives.
Track II Diplomacy - Concepts and Issues
Track II surmises all informal interaction among influential actors that go in to support and supplement regular Track I initiatives at confidence building and assist official leaders to compensate the constraints imposed by Track I negotiations. This project delves into the conceptual dualities within the premise of Track II and the broad parameters within which it can operate, while sustaining respectful dialogues between Tracks I and II. The project seeks to suggest institutionalised mechanisms through which insights of Track II can be fed into Track I with greater effectiveness and integrity. Studies would be undertaken for exploring the potential of Track II in India's bilateral relations with regard to specific countries in the neighbourhood and the East Asian region.
India, with its rapidly expanding economy, is expected to emerge as the fourth largest energy consumer by 2010. The need for hydrocarbon resources is therefore only going to grow. In a world where these resources are becoming increasingly scarce, India faces serious challenges, particularly from other booming economies. In its quest for adequate energy security, India has forged strategic alliances with supplier countries like Iran, Sudan, Venezuela and Myanmar, some of which do not meet international human rights or non-proliferation standards. The present project plans to delve into the politics of oil, oil diplomacy and its long and short term implications for India.
Rise of China’- An Analysis of Ramification
The project on 'Peaceful Rise of China' aims to build on several components of China's emergence as a global power, propelled by consistently higher growth rate and underlined by widespread international engagements by the country. While modernisation and economic development of the People's Republic of China involves a complex process of state-driven pro-market policies, the changing international relations of PRC in the regional and world arena demands a thorough enquiry of the basis, manifestations and import of China's changing bilateral and multilateral foreign relations.
Diaspora - Refurbishing Linkages
Engaging the diasporic community has, specifically in the last 5 years or so, become a substantive concern of the Indian government. This particular project attempts a study of the reasons for the heightened momentum of today. Establishing the essential heterogeneity of the Indian diasporic community, it traces the issues facing them and explores the proposals for enhancing the linkages to the benefit of both the community as well as India itself.
Global Commons are not within the domestic jurisdiction of states, but inherited by the human race as a whole and consequently equally shared by all states. The common physical spaces of the world such as the deep sea bed, the outer space, the Antarctic are incorporated within the fold of global commons. This project attempts to draw up a general understanding of the global commons and politics of states in ensuring relative gains. The project aims at widening the peripheries of global commons and accommodating other vital issues relating to the humane aspects of life. The broader objective is to analyse how India could provide a leading role in redefining and protecting Global Commons in order to ensure inter-generational equity and common benefit for all states.
Terrorism in the New Millennium: Countering the Menace
Terrorism is a malaise towards governments and the civil society at large. In recent times, the phenomenon of terrorism has graduated from adopting both conventional methods (political assassinations, kidnappings, hijackings) and weapons to a more serious and unpredictable nature; that of terrorists using weapons of mass destruction (nuclear, chemical, biological and data weapons) against the civil society.
This project proposes to study the nature of terrorism as it has emerged in the new millennium. The project will analyse not only the unpredictable and volatile nature of this new form of terrorism, but will also look into the political, religious, social and economic ramifications of the same. A special investigation into the religious fanaticism that pervades within this form of terrorism, an attempt at understanding the psyche of the terrorist who wishes to employ weapons of mass destruction, as well as an endeavour to predict the reasons, the necessity, and the mode of attack will be made. Further, the numerous questions facing the international community today regarding methods of containing terrorism will be addressed. These questions include preventing terrorists from launching their subsequent strikes, as well as ensuring the safety and security of stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction all over the world.
It is only when the world community at large is equipped with the knowledge of containing; preventing and properly responding to such terrorism can nations around the world aim at providing security and peace for their citizens.
Conflict Resolution and Peace Studies
Conflicts, violence, use of force are consistent themes of international relations. The desire for peace runs parallel to the occurrence of conflicts. The project attempts to evaluate the theoretical premises of various peace approaches and contextualise these with regard to contemporary conflict realities. Various issues relating to durable peace building-negotiation, dialogue, re-entry of separatist elements into the mainstream - would be studied and current realities will be analysed to suggest practical and applicable peace modalities.
Cross-Culture Issues and Conflict Resolution
Holsti asserted that “international conflict frequently
is not between states, but rather between distorted images
of states.” The image distortion in contemporary times
is aggravated through socio-cultural variables. Interestingly,
cultural differentiation is creating problems not only between
states but also within states. Political, economic and strategic
variables that emerge as immediate sources of conflict are
found to be rooted in the alleged divergence of cultural perceptions.
Hence a viable approach to conflict resolution should seek
to explore the linkage between cross-cultural issues and durable
Digital Divide: Issues and Implications
Colonial rule and underdevelopment characterised India in the twentieth century. The gradual opening up of the economy and the more distributive aspects of the globalisation processes in the last about 15 years have helped consolidate the positives and promises of the country's service sector. An important role in the process has been played by the Information and Communication Technology sector. The growth of this sector has helped propel forward movement of the country in number of ways and directions. However, modest economic growth has coexisted with zones of poverty and backwardness, sustaining and reinforcing inequities and socio-economic divides. Access to digital information and instruments has been expanding but still hopelessly limited. These have implications not only for the sustenance of the growth rate but also for the larger issue of equity, social and economic development and political stability.
India’s Public Health Policy: Problems and Challenges
Although there has been a remarkable improvement in life expectancy at birth, birth and death rate and infant mortality rate since independence, public health care in India leaves much to be desired. The ignored areas are women's health, child health, medical education to meet the needs of primary care, to name a few. There is a great discrepancy also between the rural and urban sectors. A major criticism if India’s National Health Policy is that it lacks specific measures to achieve broad stated goals. Particular problems include the failure to integrate health services with wider economic and social development, the lack of nutritional support and sanitation, and poor participatory involvement at the local level. The objective of the present project is to make a macro-level study of India’s public health policy, with a view to suggest desirable alterations to improve the public health situation in the country.
Energy Sustainability and Security: Focusing on Wind Energy
basic impetus for conducting research and analysis on the
issue of integrated energy is the insufficient availability
of conventional sources of energy and the untapped potential
of alternative energy resources. The present research project
by GIF is an attempt to explore the avenues whereby the alternative
sources of energy can be actually integrated from their current
peripheral contribution to national energy sources.
Locating Africa in India’s Foreign Policy
The significance of framing a comprehensive yet dynamic foreign
policy in the national security matrix of a country like India
cannot be over-emphasized. The reality of rapidly growing
economic, political and socio-cultural interdependence among
nations in the age of globalization has rendered the development
of strategic ties inevitable. India has sought to establish
strong foreign relations on the basis of shared historical
and socio-cultural identities, congruence in political goals,
military security and the potential for substantial economic