Dr Balihar Sanghera is a Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) in Sociology at the University of Kent’s School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research in the UK. His main interest is the political economy of Eurasia, exploring how economic institutions and relationships intertwine with moral values and norms. His current research examines how global powers and associated international financial institutions shape and contest Central Asia. His papers have appeared in Europe-Asia Studies, Cambridge Journal of Economics, Theory and Society International Sociology, International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy and The Sociological Review.

He has been a visiting lecturer at Novosibirsk State University, American University - Central Asia, and Boston University. He has also been a visiting scholar at Harvard and Boston Universities.

He did his PhD in Sociology at University of Lancaster, MSc in Agricultural Economics at University of Oxford, BA in Economics at University of Lancaster and PGCE in Economics and Business Studies at London University.

Project Summary

The proposed project aims to critically examine how major global powers use development strategies to compete and struggle for their vision and goals in Central Asia. The study will explore in particular how Russia, China and Saudi Arabia contest the dominance of Western development and financial institutions, putting in place alternative visions of economic, political and normative development, thereby affecting US relationship with Central Asia and its support for liberal capitalism and democracy in the region. The study will consider how the US plans to respond to new these developments and the implications of the power dynamics for the region.