International Relations – The Board Game

The four major game boards of international relations. Source: Nitin Pai/The Acorn/The Takshashila Institutio

The players are not playing on the same game board

Image: Nitin Pai/The Acorn/The Takshashila Institution

This is a graphic that I use for my lectures on international relations to illustrate the point that the players see the game board differently. How a player sees the board not only influences that player’s strategy but also influences his perception of others’ actions. The point is simple enough, but many are conditioned to believe that everyone sees the board just as they do. Of course, it does not mean that states act rigorously in accordance with these stylised models—it means that no student of international politics can be oblivious to their existence and influence.

4 thoughts on “International Relations – The Board Game”

  1. Board Games or Chess Games or otherwise…India is an infant when it comes to Foreign Policy and global influence. India has a woefully low number of diplomatic staff and is scared of punching and throwing a fist or two – I simply think that India is completely incapable of doing anything for atleast the next 300-400 years.

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