This project was transferred from the University of California, Berkeley, where it was originally lodged from 1995-2000 to UPIASI by the Ford Foundation. The project was directed by Dr. E. Sridharan, Academic Director and Chief Executive, UPIASI, with Ambassador K. Shankar Bajpai, the originator of the project, as Coordinator. The project consisted of exchange visits of one month each by four American and four Indian scholars to each other’s country to research and write a paper reflecting on some aspect of their country’s politics in the light of a study of the other country’s experience. The four American scholars are Arend Lijphart (University of California, San Diego); Juan Linz (Yale University); Alfred Stepan (Columbia University) and Nathan Glazer (Harvard University). The four Indian scholars are: Neera Chandhoke (Delhi University); Moolchand Sharma (Delhi University); Peter de Souza (Goa University); E. Sridharan (UPIASI). Yogendra Yadav (Centre for the Study of Developing Societies) joined the project as a co-author of Linz and Stepan.
Three conferences of the project were held. The first conference was held in September 2001 in New York. The second conference was held in October 2002 in New York. The third and final conference of the project was held in New Delhi, on January 23-24, 2003, at which much-revised versions of the papers presented at the first and second conferences were presented. A book, Democracy and Diversity: India and the American Experience, edited by K. Shankar Bajpai, has been published by Oxford University Press in January 2007. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh launched the book on February 3, 2007.