India has become an increasingly visible actor in international affairs and has contributed to shape debates and negotiation outcomes in several areas of global governance. New Delhi’s positions and policies have frequently been justified with India’s domestic priorities and its goals as a developing country, for example in the fields of food security and intellectual property or in the promotion of the idea of ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ for climate change. However, while several excellent studies exist on India’s domestic politics, we lack systematic knowledge about the domestic determinants of India’s policies at the global level. This is especially the case if one attempts to investigate not just domestic material (interests and institutions), but also ideational influences that shape India’s global ambitions and strategies. Just as important is the gap in our understanding of the interactions between the different layers of analysis, i.e. domestic, regional, and international factors, and their impact on India’s rise. The aim of this workshop is to offer a cutting-edge analysis of India’s rise to power, which embraces a multi-layered approach. Together, we aim to bring unique value-added to the scholarly and public debate on India by systematically factoring in the role of (frequently ignored) ideational variables and their interaction with interest-based and institutional variables. While the project is focused specifically on India, we hope that it will offer some insights of greater generalizability beyond the Indian case to understand the particular trade-offs rising powers have to deal with when operating as global actors, and also the philosophies that underpin and shape these trade-offs.