• E-ISSN 2583-6811
  • Follow us

Journal of Contemporary Politics


Journal of Contemporary Politics

Year: 2023, Volume: 2, Issue: 4, Pages: 107-114

Original Article

The Gambit of Geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific: A Critical Analysis

Received Date:12 November 2023, Accepted Date:22 December 2023, Published Date:28 December 2023


Geopolitics is essential in understanding global dynamics, economic and resource considerations, cultural interlinkages, global governance for common humanitarian causes, foreign policy, diplomacy and security. Today, geopolitics as a concept transcends temporality and ventures into technological innovations, interdependence, demographic shifts, transnational threats, and involvement of non-state actors. The emergence of the Indo-Pacific as a geopolitical construct is accompanied by the nations’ quest to establish themselves in prominent positions in the region. India, too, is not alien to this quest. India’s geopolitical move from its neighbourhood to the Indo-Pacific hence becomes a critical point of analysis in the nation’s aspiration to become the regional leader. The evolution of geopolitics from a nation-state-centric paradigm of the 20th century to a multi-pivotal approach in the 21st century reflects the current highly interdependent global order. Nation-states shape their foreign policies based on internal and external factors, with the Indo-Pacific region assuming increasing significance, particularly concerning maritime interests, both developmental and strategic. Historically, India has played a prominent role in the Indian Ocean region, contributing significantly to global trade and cultural diffusion. Over time, the land borders assumed priority over the maritime space. However, the shared yet contesting interests in the region with various nation-states competing for their claims, the attention returned to the seas. These competing claims and claimants in the region highlight the vitality of India to have a stringent and proactive foreign and maritime security policy – for the region and in the region. This research delves into the evolving discourse of geopolitics, particularly in the Indo-Pacific construct, and its intersection with maritime security. By analysing India's strategic viewpoint, particularly its maritime strategy, through scholarly and official sources, this paper aims to elucidate the critical linkages between geopolitics and maritime security. Ultimately, it seeks to underscore India's role as a key agenda-setter in the region.


Geopolitics, Indo­Pacific, Maritime Security, Security Dilemma


  1. Hagan CB, Geopolitics. GeopoliticsThe Journal of Politics1942;4(4):478490.
  2. Chimni BS, SM. International relations: perspectives for the global south. Delhi. Pearson. 2012.
  3. Mead WR. The Return of Geopolitics: The Revenge of the Revisionist PowersForeign Aff2014;93(3):6979.
  4. Axelrod R, Keohane RO. Achieving Cooperation under Anarchy: Strategies and InstitutionsWorld Politics1985;38(1):226254.
  5. Territorial Disputes in the South China SeaGlobal Conflict Tracker. Accessed2024.
  6. Gray CS, Sloan GR. Geopolitics, geography, and strategy. London. Portland, OR: Frank Cass. 1999.
  7. Ganapathi M. “Look East - Act East” Dimension of India’s Foreign PolicyIndian Foreign Aff. J2015;10(1):6373.
  8. Mehrotra L. India’s Look East Policy: Its Origin and DevelopmentIndian Foreign Aff. J2012;7(1):7585.
  9. Jaishankar D. Indian Ocean region: A pivot for India’s growthIndian Ocean Conference2016.
  10. Tourangbam M. Indo-Pacific and the Practice of Strategic AutonomyIndian Foreign Aff. J2014;9(2):119124.
  11. Kissinger HA. Power ShiftsSurvival2010;52(6):205212.
  12. Malhotra A. Understanding India’s security orientation towards Southeast and East AsiaIndia in the Indo-Pacific2022;p. 1733.
  13. Kumar AV. “Indo-Pacific”: India Will be a Fringe PlayerIndian Foreign Aff. J2014;9(2):136141.
  14. Security in the Indo-PacificStiftung Wissenschaft und Politik (SWP)2024.
  15. The Indo-Pacific regionGerman Federal Foreign Office. Accessed2024.
  16. Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) United States Trade Representative. Accessed2024.
  17. Ma Y, Jiang C, Li S, Liu Y, Wen X, Long Y, et al. Ecological vulnerability assessment of coral islands and reefs in the South China Sea based on remote sensing and reanalysis dataFrontiers in Ecology and Evolution2023;11.
  18. South China SeaInternational Crisis Group2024.
  19. Malik JM. 2004. Available from: https://apps.dtic.mil/sti/pdfs/ADA627492.pdf
  20. Brewster D. The Second Sea: Australia’s Approach to the Indian Ocean and the Indo-PacificAustralian Strategic Policy Institute2019.
  21. Suzuki H. Japan’s Leadership Role in a Multipolar Indo-PacificCenter for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), 2020. Accessed: Feb. 172024.
  22. Menon S. India and Asian Geopolitics: The Past, PresentBrookings Institution Press. 2021.
  23. Jaishankar S. The India way: strategies for an uncertain world. Noida, Uttar Pradesh. HarperCollins Publishers India. 2020.


© 2023 Published by Bangalore University. This is an open-access article under the CC BY license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/


Subscribe now for latest articles and news.