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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2019/2020

International Political Economy

Type: Compulsory course (International Relations)
Area of studies: International Relations
When: 4 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: offline
Language: English
ECTS credits: 3

Course Syllabus


Once upon a time the corporate world could content itself with the notion that 'the business of business is business', and that global problems were best left to politicians. Purely market-based parameters were held to be sufficient for corporate decision-making, and management education was monopolised by the notion of operational effectiveness, taught through the disciplines of finance, marketing and management. Such a 'hands-off' approach is no longer in tune with the current reality of corporations' increasing involvement in world affairs; at the same time the exposure of companies to emerging markets requires them to vector political parameters into their decision-making. After several years of having international security dominate the political discourse, international political economy has returned with a vengeance. This course will introduce students to the broad questions motivating the academic field of international relations and international political economy: Whose interests are served by the liberalization of trade and finance? What impact can multilateral organizations like the World Bank, International Monetary Fund and World Trade Organization have on the economic policies of member states and the functioning of the global economy? What determines the policies or rules promoted by these organizations? What are international risks and their impact on investment or distribution decisions, international marketing, reputation management, and ethical decision-making? Students will be required to understand and analyze the academic literature, and then apply academic insights to some of the most pressing policy debates. Should government offset the welfare costs of globalization and if so, how? Which priorities should be protected despite free trade liberalization? Is free trade fair trade?
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • Formulate coherent, comprehensive and informed positions on problems of global politics
  • Know where to document themselves reliably on global problems
  • Be able to critically reflect upon the salience of idealism and realism in international affairs
  • Make proof of their awareness of the convergence of politics and business and the associated challenges companies face in a competitive global environment
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Indicates the principal actors and their roles in International Relations
  • Explains t the chief International Political Economy theories and major concepts of International Political Economy
  • Explains political regulation of international trade
  • Explains the principles of the world financial system
  • Gives the isolationist and geopolitical explanations of Regional Economic Associations
  • Indicates and analyzes business activities in sensitive resource-rich areas
  • Explains the role of non-state actors in international affairs
  • Explains the political management of international investment
  • Explains the process of internalization of production
  • Explains the main approaches to International Relations
  • Analyzes the main types of regionalism
  • Explains the politics of natural resources
  • Explains the definition, causes and political economy of Foreign Direct Investment
  • Explains Russia’s interest in trade, reforming the world financial order and forming the local markets
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Introduction.
    What is International Relations & Why do we study it? Actors, States and Nations. Approaches to International Relations: Realism , Constructivism, Liberalism. Conflict: Types of Conflict in IR , Causes of War , Security Alliances , Ethnic Conflict, Terrorism, Peace Building. Cooperation & World Order: United Nations, Regionalism , European Union , NATO, Regional organizations, International Law.
  • International Political Economy.
    IPE theory and method, Major Concepts of IPE: Liberalism, Economic Nationalism, Critical Theories.
  • International Trade. Political regulation of International Trade. Sanctions.
    International Trade and its Effects; The economics of trade; Comparative Advantage; The economics of trade protection; Tariffs and quotas; International political or economic factors; International politics and institutions; Issues with free trade; Protection vs. trade liberalization; International institutions, unilateralism, and regionalism.
  • World Financial System. Origins of International Currencies and International Financial Systems. Imbalances accumulating in the Current International Financial System.
    Monetary systems, Base or standard , The operation of an international monetary system The gold standard , Floating rates , The political economy of exchange rate policy The collapse of the classical liberal order, The decline of the United Kingdom World War I as a turning point, Reconstruction of the international economic system The Rise of Bretton Woods and a new liberal order. Explaining the new order: four perspectives
  • Regionalism and Issues of development.
    Isolationist and geopolitical explanations of Regional Economic Associations. Types of regionalism. Regional institutions. Economic policies of ddvelopment.
  • Risk management & political analysis. The geo-economy of natural resources.
    Business activities in sensitive resource-rich areas, Political and country Risks. Risk management. Politics of natural resources. Pipelines, transportation routes.
  • Non-state actors: media empires & influence games - reputation management, public relations, economic intelligence.
    Viewing: Colin Powell with vial http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jV5Ggfn9PYM Colin Powell – we should not have Powell Says US Should Not Have Invaded Iraq CNN on Russia-Georgia http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=os1yqjbYWvI FOX news – famous http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oV_UWA7iYy8
  • Political Management of International Investment: Keeping the Gates of Domestic Financial Market.
    Political Management of the Export of Capital Political Influence on International Financial and Trade Institutions Political Aspects of Currency Regimes Foreign Aid.
  • Multinational Corporations and the Internationalization of Production. Political and Market Strategy of the Company.
    Multinational Corporations and the Internationalization of Production. Defining foreign direct investment. The causes of FDI. The OLI approach: ownership, location, internalization. The political economy of FDI Domestic societal factors. Domestic institutional factors. International economic factors. International political factors. Stages in the political economy of MNC-LDC relations.
  • Russia’s interests in the world political-economic system (structured discussion).
    Russia’s trade interests. Russia’s interests in reforming the world financial order. Russia’s regional interests in forming the local markets.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Seminars
  • non-blocking Writing test
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.5 * Seminars + 0.5 * Writing test


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Barber, B. (2013). Jihad Vs. McWorld : Terrorism’s Challenge to Democracy (Vol. Unabridged). New York: Ballantine Books. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=745350
  • Baybars-Hawks, B. (2018). Non-state Actors in Conflicts : Conspiracies, Myths, and Practices. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1848371
  • Chang, T., Hwang, B.-G., Deng, X., & Zhao, X. (2018). Identifying Political Risk Management Strategies in International Construction Projects. Advances in Civil Engineering, 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/1016384
  • Constantinos Filis. (2019). A Closer Look at Russia and Its Influence in the World. New York: Nova. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=2201865
  • Drezner, D. W. (2001). Globalization and Policy Convergence. International Studies Review, 3(1), 53. https://doi.org/10.1111/1521-9488.00225
  • Drucker, P. F. (1974). Foreign Affairs, 53(1), 121. https://doi.org/10.2307/20039495
  • Eichengreen, B. (1987). Hegemonic Stability Theories of the International Monetary System. CEPR Discussion Papers. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.p.cpr.ceprdp.193
  • Escobar, A. (DE-588)170495892, (DE-576)131377639. (1995). Encountering development : the making and unmaking of the Third World / Arturo Escobar. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.04829487X
  • Gilpin, R., & Gilpin, J. M. (2001). Global Political Economy : Understanding the International Economic Order. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=340193
  • Global Political Economy : Contemporary Theories Ronen Palan
  • Goodhand, J., & Hulme, D. (1999). From wars to complex political emergencies: understanding conflict and peace-building in the new world disorder. Third World Quarterly, 20(1), 13–26. https://doi.org/10.1080/01436599913893
  • Grieco, J. M. (1988). Anarchy and the limits of cooperation: a realist critique of the newest liberal institutionalism. International Organization, 42(3), 485–507. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0020818300027715
  • Hamilton, A. (2017). Report on manufacturers. Report on Manufacturers (p. 1). Great Neck Publishing. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=f5h&AN=21212912
  • Hoffman, B., & Huffman, B. (2003). THE LOGIC OF SUICIDE TERRORISM. (cover story). Atlantic, 291(5), 40. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=f5h&AN=9730945
  • Identifying political risk management strategies in international construction projects. (2018). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.68B8462C
  • Klare, M. T. (2001). The New Geography of Conflict. Foreign Affairs, 80(3), 49. https://doi.org/10.2307/20050150
  • Krasner, S. D. (2001). SOVEREIGNTY. Foreign Policy, (122), 20. https://doi.org/10.2307/3183223
  • Mearsheimer, J. J., & Walt, S. M. (2003). An Unnecessary War. Foreign Policy, (134), 51. https://doi.org/10.2307/3183521
  • Nye Jr., J. S. (1974). Foreign Affairs, 53(1), 153. https://doi.org/10.2307/20039497
  • Rethinking Global Political Economy : Emerging Issues, Unfolding Odysseys Burch, Kurt; Denemark, Robert A.;and more Routledge 2003
  • Shiffman, G. M. (2006). Economic Instruments of Security Policy : Influencing Choices of Leaders. Basingstoke [England]: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=194534
  • Smith, A. (2013). Wealth of Nations. Hertfordshire [England]: Wordsworth Editions. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1023596
  • Tarzi, S. M. (1999). Chapter 10: Third World Governments and Multinational Corporations: Dynamics of Host’s Bargaining Power. In International Political Economy (pp. 156–166). Taylor & Francis Ltd / Books. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=bsu&AN=16877939
  • The Emergence of the Global Political Economy. William Thompson and Jeremy Black
  • Walt, S. M. (1998). International relations: One world, many theories. Foreign Policy, (110), 29. https://doi.org/10.2307/1149275
  • Western, J., & Goldstein, J. S. (2011). Humanitarian Intervention Comes of Age. Foreign Affairs, 90(6), 48. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=f5h&AN=66803891

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • The Palgrave Handbook of Contemporary International Political Economy edited by Timothy M. Shaw, Laura C. Mahrenbach, Renu Modi, Xu Yi-chong. (2019). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.51626463X