Walter Anderson teaches at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and directs the South Asian Studies Program. He is co-author of Brotherhood in Saffron: Rashtriya Swayarnsevak Sangh and Hindu Revivalism, and has served as Chief of the U.S. State Department’s South Asia Division in the Office of Analysis for the Near East and South Asia. He has also served as Special Assistant to the Ambassador at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi and member of the Policy Planning Staff. Anderson has previously taught at the University of Chicago and the College of Wooster, and he currently resarches Hindu nationalism and India’s assertive foreign policy in the Indian Ocean. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Chicago.
The early 1990s brought two profound changes triggering a more engaged Indian foreign policy generally and in Asia more specifically: the end of the Cold War and the adoption of market reforms. Primarily motivated by economic interests, India announced a “Look East” policy focused on the economic powerhouses to the East. The Indian election several months ago of a new and visionary prime minister committed to economic growth will almost certainly result in an even more engaged foreign policy, especially toward Asia east of India. This BJP governing party, with a stable majority in parliament, is firmly behind Prime Minister Modi’s policies.