Dr Alex Waterman interviewed on 'Fight in the Shade Podcast: A Counterinsurgency Podcast'
Dr Waterman features on the first episode of 'Fight in the Shade Podcast: A Counterinsurgency Podcast' where he discusses his PhD and fieldwork in India and his current research project.
The podcast begins with a question posed to Dr Waterman about how he became interested in the topic of counterinsurgency. Dr Waterman explains that his interest ultimately stemmed from his undergraduate degree in International History with Politics at Leeds, and his passion for studying the politics of counterinsurgency continued to develop throughout his further studies.
Dr Waterman proceeds to discuss the five months he spent in India in 2016 conducting fieldwork for his PhD where he linked up with two research institutes, the first was a think tank based in New Delhi called the ‘Institute of Defence Studies and Analyses’ and the second was the ‘Tata Institute of Social Sciences’ in Guwahati. Linking up with two research institutes was beneficial for his research as it enabled him to gain insight from a broad range of stakeholders. “The two balanced each other out really well” Dr Waterman claims.
The podcast delves into further detail of Dr Waterman’s experiences and research in India. The discussion touches upon the myriad state-armed group relationships, or forms of “order,” that exist in India’s conflict-affected northeast and the diverse ways Indian state actors have attempted to shape these orders, reflecting on his PhD research and recent publications.
The episode concludes with discussion about Dr Waterman’s ongoing research project ‘Dancing with Devils: How do militaries integrate understandings of rebels and militias into counterinsurgency doctrines?'. Dr Waterman explains that the project evolved from topics which underpinned his PhD as well as a project which he undertook alongside Dr Worrall who was his Doctoral Supervisor. Dr Waterman explains that ‘Dancing with Devils’ is a starting point which nestles within a longer-term research agenda that aims to compare how different types of counterinsurgent generate and then act upon knowledge of the complex orders within which they operate.