nl en

Foundational Texts in Governance, Economics, Development




Admissions requirements



Governance, Economics, and Development focuses attention on alleviating problems through the use of policy and organization. Core to these issues are the nature of progress, social change, and the wisdom of utilizing different approaches. A great deal of the grounds of this debate focuses on progressive visions of change, and conservative visions of reform often grounded on different intellectual assumptions. In this course we will be exploring the foundation texts that found these assumptions and perspectives to inform not only student’s understanding of foundational debates in governance and development, but also to help student make developed their own more informed intellectual commitments. (example texts will likely include excerpts and essays of Edmund Burke, Thomas Paine, Karl Marx, William Easterly, Joseph Schumpeter, and Cicero.)

Course objectives

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the best foundational arguments undergirding perspectives on Governance, Economics, and Development (particularly those with which they a priori disagree).

  • Synthesize different positions on key divides in thinking about progress, governance, and intervention and argue for them convincingly (particularly those with which they a priori disagree).

  • Identify and express the grounding of one’s own outlook on questions of progress, policy-making, and intervention with reference to real-world challenges facing the globe today.


Once available, timetables will be published in the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

This course will involve almost exclusively seminar discussion over the relevant texts and essays written about the texts by course participants. The reading load will be heavy in a course such as this, and students should schedule accordingly.


  • Participation 18%, Assessed continually through participation in seminar and activities

  • Team Debate of a Contemporary Issue 19%, Pre-selected by students per session by the end of week 2. Students who have not signed up will be randomly assigned.

  • Two Web-post reflections 20% Weeks 2,3,4,5,6,7 (10% each)

  • Peer Feedback and participation on discussion boards 18%, Weeks 2,3,4,5,6,7 (3% each)

  • Final Reflective Essay 25%, due Friday of Week 8 (by midnight)

Please note: ● In accordance with article 4.8 of the Course and Examination Regulations (OER), within 30 days after the publication of grades, the instructor will provide students the opportunity to inspect their exams/coursework. ● There is a no re-sit policy at Leiden University College.


There will be a Blackboard site available for this course. Students will be enrolled at least one week before the start of classes.

Reading list



This course is open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator. Interested non-LUC students should contact



Students will receive reading for the first meeting via blackboard after enrolling. Please e-mail the instructor If you have not heard from the instructor as the first session approaches so that he may personally send them to you.