Skip to main content
Samir Puri
Samir Puri

Dr Samir Puri

Visiting Lecturer

Research interests

  • Conflict
  • History
  • Politics
  • Security

Contact details

Biography

Dr Samir Puri is an Associate Fellow at Chatham House. He is also a Visiting Lecturer in the Department of War Studies and Associate at the Imperial War Museum. His most recent previous position was Senior Fellow at IISS-Asia based in Singapore (2020-22).

Dr Puri is the author of four well received books, the latest being Russia's Road to War with Ukraine (Biteback, 2022), which was described as "stimulating and thoughtful" by Tony Baber in the Financial Times.

His previous book, The Great Imperial Hangover (Atlantic, 2020), was described as ‘an excellent read’ by Robert Kaplan; ‘enlightening’ by The Spectator; ‘an exceptional account, both personal and scholarly’ by Prospect; and offering ‘penetrating insights into the way the legacies of empire still affect the behaviour of states and the international climate’ by the Financial Times. Published in the USA as The Shadows of Empire (Pegasus, 2021), Fareed Zakaria called it ‘well written, comprehensive and judicious' in The New York Times.

Dr Puri’s career combines academia and public service. In 2020 he advised Downing Street's Race Commission on how imperial legacies influence Britain. In 2018-19 he was Assistant Head of Research at the Ministry of Defence's think tank DCDC. In 2017 he was seconded to the Commonwealth Secretariat to author its strategy on countering violent extremism.

From 2015-18, he was a Lecturer in War Studies, teaching MA courses on Counter Terrorism, Contemporary Warfare and Conflict, Security and Development. He also taught Strategy & Policy as an Adjunct Professor at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Bologna.

From 2009-15, Dr Puri worked for the Foreign Office, where his assignments covered counter terrorism and policy support to peace processes. He was seconded for a year to monitor the war in east Ukraine with the OSCE. From 2006-09, he was a Defence Analyst at RAND Europe.

Dr Puri holds a PhD from Cambridge University, an MA in War Studies from King’s and a BA in History and Politics from Warwick University.

Selected Publications

Books

  • The Shadows of Empire: How Imperial History Shapes Our World (Pegasus Books, 2021)
  • The Great Imperial Hangover: How Empires Have Shaped the World (Atlantic Books, 2020).
  • Fighting and Negotiating with Armed Groups: the Difficulty of Security Strategic Outcomes, IISS Adelphi Series (Routledge, 2016)
  • Pakistan's War on Terrorism: Strategies for Combating Jihadist Groups Since 9/11, Asia Security Series (Routledge, 2011)

Journal articles

  • “The strategic hedging of Iran, Russia and China: Juxtaposing participation in the global system with regional revisionism,” Journal of Global Security Studies, 2:4 (2017)
  • “Brinkmanship, not COIN, in Pakistan’s post-9/11 Internal War,” Small Wars and Insurgencies, 28:1 (2017)
  • “Fathoming Pakistan’s Cycles of Instability,’ RUSI Journal, 152:5 (2007)
  • “The Role of Intelligence in Deciding the Battle of Britain,” Intelligence and National Security, 21:3 (2006)

Book Chapters

  • “Engaging with proxy groups and indirect state influence in Ukraine and Syria” in Jack Spence, Claire Yorke, Alastair Masser (eds.), New Perspectives on Diplomacy, (IB. Taurus, 2021)
  • “India’s two-track response to the Naxalites: security and development, but no political process” in Shanthie DeSouza (ed.), Countering Insurgencies and Violent Extremism in South Asia (Routledge, 2019)
  • “Political realism and strategic theory”’ in Robert Schuett and Miles Hollingworth (eds.), The Edinburgh Companion to Political Realism (Edinburgh University Press, 2018)

Policy Papers

  • Author, ‘Reconciling 2020’s Britain with its Imperial History’. For the UK Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparity (2020)
  • Lead Reviewer, ‘Global Strategic Trends: The Future Starts Today. Sixth Edition’. For DCDC, Ministry of Defence (2018)
  • Author, ‘Commonwealth Countering Violent Extremism Unit: Strategy’. For the Commonwealth Secretariat (2017)

News

Academic insights on Israel and Gaza

Academics and researchers from King’s have shared their expertise around events in Israel and Gaza and the wider consequences of the ongoing conflict.

Map showing Israel and Gaza

Events

28SepA new book which offers fresh perspectives on modern diplomacy. Picture: MATHIAS REDING

Contemporary Diplomacy in Action: New Perspectives on Diplomacy

A new book which offers fresh perspectives on modern diplomacy will be at the centre of discussion at an upcoming event hosted by the Institute of Middle...

Please note: this event has passed.

24Juncgs-samirpuri

The Great Imperial Hangover: book launch with author Samir Puri

Join the author, Dr Samir Puri, for a conversation around how imperial legacies are still shaping the thorniest issues we face today.

Please note: this event has passed.

News

Academic insights on Israel and Gaza

Academics and researchers from King’s have shared their expertise around events in Israel and Gaza and the wider consequences of the ongoing conflict.

Map showing Israel and Gaza

Events

28SepA new book which offers fresh perspectives on modern diplomacy. Picture: MATHIAS REDING

Contemporary Diplomacy in Action: New Perspectives on Diplomacy

A new book which offers fresh perspectives on modern diplomacy will be at the centre of discussion at an upcoming event hosted by the Institute of Middle...

Please note: this event has passed.

24Juncgs-samirpuri

The Great Imperial Hangover: book launch with author Samir Puri

Join the author, Dr Samir Puri, for a conversation around how imperial legacies are still shaping the thorniest issues we face today.

Please note: this event has passed.