External stakeholder management is important for managing an infrastructure asset throughout its life cycle. There is a dearth of research exploring the asset creation team's rationalities invoking the strategies used for managing external stakeholders. The circuits-of-power theoretical framework, which considers actors within their social context, is apt for studying the rationale of the asset creation team in carrying out these strategies. Through a systematic in-depth case study of a metro rail asset in India, diverse data were collected from multiple sources, such as semi-structured interviews, news articles and social media; a set of strategic rationalities used to frame messages to stakeholders was identified. These included pride in the asset, importance of the asset, overemphasis on time and acceptability of public inconvenience. The asset creation team, as part of the broader asset community, is also influenced by the strategic discourses aimed at managing external stakeholders. The authors discuss the implications of the strategic discourses used for asset management on project, programme and portfolio management. The relationship between strategic discourses striving to manage assets and the corresponding asset creation team rationalities affords multiple avenues for future research.