Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center Stanford University


Indian Soft Power and Associations of the American Diaspora

Occasional Paper

Rafiq Dossani

April 27, 2009

The objective of this paper is to examine the ‘soft power' exercised by associations formed by the Indian diaspora in the United States, as it relates to: (a) building up the image of India as a deserving member of the global elite - politically, culturally and economically, and, then, (b) using that image to achieve certain goals for their country of origin. The term "association" is used to denote both formal non-profit organizations, such as trade associations, and informal non-profit organizations. The latter includes informal networks created by e-mail groups, as well as initiatives of limited life-span created to achieve specific aims, such as reducing anti-dumping tariffs on steel imports from India or passing the US-India nuclear fuel agreement.