Upinder Singh taught in St. Stephen’s College (1981-2004) and subsequently in the History Department of the University of Delhi (2004-2018). After her BA (Honours) in History from St. Stephen’s College, she obtained her MA and MPhil from the University of Delhi, followed by a PhD from McGill University, Montreal. She has received fellowships to conduct research in Leiden, Cambridge, Harvard and Leuven. In 2009, she was awarded the Infosys Prize in Social Sciences – History.
Upinder Singh’s writings range over various aspects of ancient Indian social, economic, and religious history; the intersection between political ideas and practice; Indian archaeology; the modern modern histories of ancient sites and monuments, and cultural interactions between India and Southeast Asia. Her research papers have been published in various Indian and international journals. She is the author of Political Violence in Ancient India (2017); The Idea of Ancient India: Essays on Religion, Politics, and Archaeology (2016); A History of Ancient and Early Medieval India: From the Stone Age to the Twelfth Century (2008); The Discovery of Ancient India: Early Archaeologists and the Beginnings of Archaeology (2004); Kings, Brāhmanas, and Temples in Orissa: An Epigraphic Study (AD 300-1147) (1994); and Ancient Delhi (1999). She has edited The World of India’s First Archaeologists: Letters from Alexander Cunningham to J.D.M. Beglar (2021), Rethinking Early Medieval India (2011), and Delhi: Ancient History (2006). She has co-edited Buddhism in Asia: Revival and Reinvention (2016), Asian Encounters: Exploring Connected Histories (2014) and Ancient India: New Research (2009).
Her current research interests include the history of ideas and Asian interactions in the premodern world.