For three years I taught graduate-level courses for students at Oxford’s School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies and supervised Masters-level extended writing projects and a thesis; in 2017 I also supervised a graduate study course at the University of Chicago. Between 2012 and 2015 I also regularly provided small-group and class teaching for undergraduates from several different Oxford colleges and for visiting students from Sarah Lawrence College. This experience is summarized below.

I am also a firm believer in academic service (and, as a scholar of bureaucracy, it’s always great to get a look from the inside). Between 2011 and 2015 I sat on the steering committee of All Souls College, sat on hiring committees, and for three years also served as secretary to the governing body. I was particularly proud to sit on an Equality and Diversity Working Committee assembled in 2013 to help make the College a more inclusive place, and to lead outreach events for less traditional applicants between 2010 and 2014. In my years at Oxford I also co-convened four seminar series and four conferences. At UChicago, too, I have become a member of the Committee on Southern Asian Studies, co-convener of the flagship South Asia Seminar (2016–2018), and am running a series of conferences and seminars on climate policy. I look forward to continuing this commitment to service as a full-fledged faculty member.

Drawing on this experience, you can read about my philosophy of teaching here and find a statement of my contributions to diversity here.


Graduate teaching

Indian Politics since 1947

I taught this class-based graduate-level course between 2012 and 2015. Posing the key question ‘Has India’s democracy been a success?’, this course surveyed the evolution of India’s political institutions, parties and ideologies since 1947. Students analyzed challenges to Indian democracy—such as corruption, regional movements, authoritarian tendencies and the colonial legacy—and engage critically with the politics of gender, caste, class, religion and ethnicity. Together we examined the transition from state-led development to economic liberalization, and the transformations in the country’s political economy and national identity which underlie this. Finally, we also explored democratic developments outside party politics—including changes in ‘civil society’, the role of NGOs, and the development of social movements.


The Environment in India

India’s environment is rapidly changing in the face of unprecedented urbanization, industrialization, agricultural development and population growth. Water supply, sewage and air pollution present major challenges, whilst land, forests, minerals, rivers and the seas have become sites of growing conflict between locals, government and multinational corporations.

This interdisciplinary team-taught course, the first of its kind, examined some of the major environmental issues facing India—and the world—today, from middle-class activism to international climate change negotiations. It encouraged students to think critically about how the Indian state engages with environmental challenges, where it falls short, and what lies beyond its purview. For three years I lectured on this course, surveying the domestic politics of energy in India.

Graduate supervision

I have previously supervised extended essays and a graduate dissertation. I am always happy for students to contact me about supervision or co-supervision, especially on topics within political history, energy and the environment, or the state.

Undergraduate teaching

The Politics of South Asia

This course introduced students to the nature of political change in the major South Asian countries—India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh—in the period after independence from colonial rule, both through single-country case studies and comparative work. We examine themes from the nature of the post-colonial state to federalism, the politics of aid, and the nuclear bomb. Between 2012 and 2015 I taught this course both through classes and small-group tutorials, with a number of my students achieving exceptional marks in the Final Examination for the paper.

India, 1919–1939

I have acted as official examiner for Oxford’s Faculty of History for this upper-level course, which traced the development of Indian nationalism through the oeuvres of key thinkers. (It has now been reinvented as “From Gandhi to the Green Revolution: India, Independence and Modernity, 1939–69.”)

For the Sarah Lawrence at Oxford Programme, I designed and taught these two courses in 2013:


International Relations of South Asia

This eight-week course, which I taught alongside organizing guest sessions with specialists, surveyed IR in South Asia through different issues and scales of analysis, from the borderlands and the region to the wider world. Topics included the bomb, water sharing, and cross-border terrorism.


The Political Economy of Development 

Designed to accommodate both economics and anthropology majors, this eight-week course explored diverse aspects of the political economy of development—including ‘jobless growth’, the treatment of women, corruption, and the developmental state—with particular reference to empirical material from India.