Dr. Michael Liebig

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Research Fields / Interests

  • Pre-modern political thought in South Asia, notably Kautilya's Arthashastra
  • Flow, re-use and latent presence of pre-modern political thought in contemporary South Asia
  • International Relations theory
  • Intelligence Studies

About Michael Liebig

Michael Liebig defended his doctoral dissertation “Endogenous Politico-Cultural Resources – The Relevance of Kautilya’s Arthashastra for Modern India” in Political Science at Goethe-University, Frankfurt am Main (external supervisor: Prof. Subrata Mitra).

After studying Political Science at the Otto-Suhr-Institut, Freie Universität, Berlin and Goethe-University, Frankfurt (Diplom-Politologe), Michael Liebig has worked as employed and free-lance journalist.

Michael Liebig has frequently been to India in the context of journalistic work. In 2014 and again in 2016, he had a Visiting Fellowship at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) in New Delhi, extending over five-month period.

Since 2013, Michael Liebig is a Fellow at the South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University. Since   2015, he has been Lecturer at the Department of Political Science.


  • Endogenous Politico-Cultural Resources: The Relevance of Kautilya's Arthashastra for Modern India (Seminar, SoSe 2015)
  • Kautilya and Machiavelli: Political Realism in a Transcultural Perspective I (Seminar, WS 2015/16)
  • Kautilya, Hans J. Morgenthau and E.H. Carr: Political Realism in a Transcultural Perspective II(Seminar, SoSe 2016)
  • Political Prudence - A European and a South Asian Tradition in IR Theory (Seminar, WS 2016/17)
  • Intelligence Culture in South Asia (Seminar, SoSe 2017)
  • Kautilya's Arthashastra and Indian Security Policy (Seminar, WS 2017/18)
  • Counter-Insurgency in India: Politics, Security-Vectored State Bureaucracy & the ‘Kautilyan Template (Seminar, SoSe 2018)
  • Kautilya ‘meets’ Max-Weber – Political-Bureaucratic Interaction in India (WS 2018-19)


  • Subrata Mitra and Michael Liebig (2017): Kautilya’s Arthashastra: An Intellectual Portrait. The Classical Roots of Modern Politics in India. New Delhi: Rupa.  
  • Michael Liebig & Saurabh Mishra (Eds.) (2017): The Arthaśātra in a Transcultural Perspective: Comparing Kautilya with Sun-Zi, Nizam al-Mulk, Barani and Machiavelli. New Delhi: IDSA/Pentagon Press.
  • Subrata Mitra and Michael Liebig (2016): Kautilya’s Arthashastra: An Intellectual Portrait. The Classical Roots of Modern Politics in India. Baden-Baden: Nomos
  • Dany Shoham and Michael Liebig (2016): The intelligence dimension of Kautilyan statecraft and its implications for the present. Journal of Intelligence History (Taylor & Francis). 15/2, pp. 119-138
  • Liebig, Michael (2014): Endogene Politisch-Kultuelle Ressourcen: Die Relevanz des Kautilya-Arthashastra für das moderne Indien. Baden-Baden: Nomos
  • Liebig, Michael (2014): Kauilya's Arthasastra - A Classic Text of Statecraft and an Untapped Political Science Resource. Heidelberg Papers in South Asian and Comparative Politics, 74 http://archiv.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/portale/hdpaper/
  • Liebig, Michael (2014): Statecraft and Intelligence Analysis in the Kautilya-Arthashastra, Journal of Defence Studies, Vol. 8/4, pp. 27-54 http://idsa.in/jds/8_4_2014_StatecraftandIntelligenceAnalysis.html
  • Liebig, Michael (2013): Kautilya's Relevance for India Today. India Quarterly (Sage), 69/2, pp. 99-116
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Letzte Änderung: 2020-05-08
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