On 20 October 2023, Dr Sebastian Haug (IDOS) was invited to speak at a closed-door conference on India’s role in climate cooperation organised by the Centre for Social and Economic Progress (CSEP) in New Delhi.
India has become an increasingly visible player in world politics. As part of broader – and sometimes controversially discussed – claims to a more prominent global role, the Indian government has expanded its international engagement through different modalities. One of these is triangular cooperation, i.e. partnerships that cut across North-South divisions by mobilising Southern expertise for Southern beneficiaries supported by traditional donors or multilateral organisations.
Building on a CSEP report on India’s global climate strategy, the conference focused on India’s South-South and triangular cooperation on climate-related issues. In his talk, Sebastian Haug shared recent insights into India’s trajectory as a triangular cooperation partner and its role at the multilateral level, including Indian contributions to trust funds managed by the United Nations. With regard to the roles played by traditional donors, he presented evidence from a recent study on how members of the OECD Development Assistance Committee engage in triangular cooperation. Conference discussions were lively and underlined both the challenges of effective (climate) cooperation and the need for further analysis of cooperation modalities. In this way, the CSEP conference highlights the relevance of IDOS research that engages with partners across the globe to unpack the potentials and pitfalls of different cooperation practices.