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PPR.342  Global Political Economy and the World Today

Tutor: Professor Chris May
Term: Not available in 2014/15

Course Description

This module surveys a range of analyses usually grouped together under the term International (or now Global) Political Economy.  The module will further develop knowledge of three main groups of analyses: mainstream liberal analyses; institutional approaches; and critical theories of global political economy.  At the end of the module, students will have enhanced knowledge of the range of approaches that can be utilised to understand the contemporary global system from a range of political economic perspectives, appreciate the differences between these approaches and the benefits (and shortcomings) of deploying each general approach and some of its variants when seeking to explain elements of the current global (economic) crisis.  The module uses current discussions and deliberations about the global political economy to illustrate the approaches being discussed and to help students develop their appreciation of the complexities of global politics and economics.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the major approaches of International (or Global) Political Economy.
  • Understand the broad distinctions between different accounts of the contemporary global system.
  • Apply specified approaches to understand specific cases, practices and institutions in the field of international or global political economy.


40% coursework and 60% exam.


1 essay of 3000 words.  Exam: 2 hours. 

Teaching Method

Lecture (1.5 hours) and seminar (1 hour) weekly.

Introductory Reading

Blyth, M.                              Routledge Handbook of IPE, 2009
Gill, S. & Law, D.                The Global Political Economy – Perspectives, Problems and
                                                Policies, 1988
O’Brien, R. &
  Williams, M.                     Global Political Economy, 3rd ed., 2010
Ronen, P.                            Global Political Economy – Contemporary Theories,
2nd ed., 2013
Ravenhill, J.                        Global Political Economy, 3rd ed., 2011
Strange, S.                          States and Markets, 2nd ed., 1994.

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