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"Negotiated Coexistence": Indian and Chinese Engagement in the Global Governance of Peacebuilding


A much-discussed theme in international relations is how emerging powers will engage with the declining liberal world order and its various governance regimes. This article examines the engagement of emergent powers with the regime of “peacebuilding.” Empirically, it examines the interaction between India and China, with liberal peacebuilding projects in the peace processes of Nepal and Myanmar respectively. Departing from the theory that emergent powers either displace, or converge with, the liberal world order, this article argues that emergent powers have a “negotiated coexistence” with liberal peacebuilders. Despite competing motivations, this “coexistence” of liberal peacebuilders and emergent powers is negotiated, first, by the agency of conflict-affected states, who invoke plural forms of international engagement, to gain strategic advantage, and secondly, by limited interaction between the two, given the differences in their priorities and modalities of engagement. The differences ensure that emergent powers operate in parallel, yet distinctly, from peacebuilders, rarely crossing each other's path. This limited interaction not only prevents this coexistence from degenerating into instances of potential contestation but also inhibits cooperation. Yet, when emergent powers view their economic and strategic interests being threatened by norms and practices of liberal peacebuilding projects, few instances of contestation emerge.


(2022). "Negotiated Coexistence": Indian and Chinese Engagement in the Global Governance of Peacebuilding. International Studies Review,

Acceptance Date Mar 9, 2022
Publication Date Mar 9, 2022
Publicly Available Date Mar 10, 2024
Journal International Studies Review
Print ISSN 1521-9488
Publisher Oxford University Press
Keywords changing global order; emerging power; peacebuilding
Publisher URL


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