Rising powers and norm contestation: norm begrudgers in international politics

Research output: Working paper


How do rising powers respond to changes in international order – especially when those changes deviate from their preferences? Much of the literature views rising powers as problematic actors for international order-making. However, this overlooks that rising powers use a specific set of resistance tactics, indicative of a missing norm ideal type, the norm begrudger: where the actor uses prior rhetoric and disengages with updating normative discourse, yet gives public support to institutionalize emerging norms; ultimately acquiescing through begrudging support. The norm begrudger role is selected when external support for normative change is strong and when the emerging norm is deprioritized. To isolate this ideal type, I use a specific puzzle of India’s normative engagement to the responsibility to protect, and trace India’s response from the inception, institutionalization and implementation of the norm during the Libya crisis at the UN Security Council. Research draws upon publicly-available sources and elite interviews.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusSubmitted - 2022


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