Constitutional and democratic politics and democratization are themes of enduring centrality and topicality in post-colonial South Asia, as they deeply implicate larger state and nation building processes as well as sub-territorial and local self-government, political participation and institutional engineering. The Network’s vast and growing breadth of research in this area spans the rich colonial and post-colonial history of political and constitutional activism and resistance in the region on the one hand, and the entrenched colonial continuities, civil-military imbalances, and ethno-linguistic and religious cleavages on the other.

This body of research endeavors to capture the complexity and diversity of the political economy, sociology, and constitutional design of state building through an equally diverse and rigorous set of methodological and theoretical frameworks – including a combination of original historical, analytical and empirical methods – to both explain the trajectory of and inform the processes of constitutionalism and democratization. The Network aims to systematically synthesize the hitherto disparately studied but deeply interconnected themes of judicial politics and power, institutional balance of power and the political structures underlying it, federalization and ethnicization of politics, and special constitutional political structures in order to advance a meaningful public and policy discourse on constitutional and democratic development.

Research Themes