Beyond Liberal Order: States, Societies and Markets in the Global Indian Ocean

Tuesday 15 February 2022 (14:30-16:00)

Convenor: Dr Kailing Xie

Beyond Liberal Order: States, Societies and Markets in the Global Indian Ocean

What happens to our understanding of liberal international order – its history, material bases and ideological claims – if we read its development not solely as a social formation built by the West and exported around the earth, but rather as an economic and political encounter with the world of the Global Indian Ocean?

Of all the macro-regions of the earth, the Indian Ocean world contains the greatest range of cultures and religions, political systems and commercial networks. Almost three billion humans live in the countries along the shores of the Ocean and another half a billion reside in states adjacent to the oceanic rim. The populations here are, more than anywhere else, young, multilingual and likely to move in their lives from the countryside to the cities. It is in this region that many of the key challenges facing humanity in the next decades –adapting to climate change, rethinking mechanisms of legitimate governance and accountability, ensuring durable human security– will demand a defining response.

Three contributors to a groundbreaking new book argue that much of the contemporary focus on the North Atlantic and Pacific as the defining sites of the global political economy directs our attention away from the extraordinary political dynamism of another macro-region and the ways in which the foundations of liberal order are being subverted and reworked, as part of a long historical tradition of doing so. To understand how the world is changing -and what the future of international order and global politics might be-, the perspective of a Global Indian Ocean is essential.


Professor Harry Verhoeven, Center on Global Energy Policy/School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University

Professor William Reno, Department of Political Science, Northwestern University

Professor Shandana Mohmand, Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex


The IDD Guest Seminar Series brings scholars and practitioners working on international development to the University of Birmingham to share their latest research and ideas. All seminars are open to staff, students, and the general public. For details of other upcoming seminars please visit IDD's Eventbrite page and follow us on twitter @iddbirmingham. Speakers will present for 45 minutes, followed by 45 minutes for audience Q&A.

Please register if you would like to attend. A Zoom link will be emailed to participants before the event.

This free event is open to all - staff, students, key stakeholders and members of the public.