India's attempts to increase its “soft power” will only translate into something meaningful if it uses this power in a more systematic and planned way, improving its economic performance, suggests author Mr Nicholas Blarel.

The IT industry has taken to the global stage India's ‘soft power' and made India as a knowledge power. “Indians are looked upon by global companies for leadership. You have kindled among millions of young Indians the power of using knowledge as a passport to the future...."

It is soft power that will to a large extent make or unmake superpowers of the future. China and India are the obvious candidates to be considered as the future superpowers. India will have to pit itself against the might of the Chinese economic machine.

Moving forward, we need a far more neutral baseline in assessing power based not on a latent accounting of inputs such as nuclear stockpiles and Hollywood films produced, but on outputs: does it work?...As a student of diplomatic theory, the greatest myth elevated by the notion of ‘soft power’ is its self-identification with diplomacy and their collective antithetical role to ‘hard’ or military power.

The power of many can accomplish more than any one can do alone -- and that distinction is different than the traditional classification of hard and soft power

Advocating a more pragmatic approach, he wanted India to maintain cordial relations with the countries that would invest in India and help the country meet challenges such as food security, which was assuming a very grave magnitude.

Sanctions are a hard form of economic power that Joseph Nye discusses in chapter three of his new book, The Future of Power, and a topic that is discussed widely today in relation to Syria. Many policy makers are pondering whether sanctions will be useful in convincing President al-Assad to stop killing his people.