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Global Political Economy




Admissions requirements

Introduction to Globalization and Transnational Politics
Political Research Design is not a prerequisite but advantageous for this course.


Global political economy is a multidisciplinary field that addresses processes and relations governing the development, organization, and operation of the world economy and their effects on social life in a variety of settings. This course offers a rigorous introduction to global political economy by way of a survey of key concepts and traditions of theory and research in the field and case-based explorations of selected historical and contemporary themes. Themes addressed in this course include the origins and development of global capitalism, the interplay of politics and markets in the governance of the world economy, state transformation in the context of globalization, the organization and operation of global industries, the determinants of welfare and inequality globally and across and within nations, and the moral, ethical, and practical implications that arise from these issues and resulting policy and civic debates.

Course objectives

Upon completion of this course students will have the ability to:

  • Draw on specialized articles, books, and data to address course themes;

  • Demonstrate comprehension of key concepts in global political economy;

  • Articulate multiple theoretical perspectives in global political economy;

  • Formulate hypotheses on the basis of various theoretical perspectives;

  • Understand and experiment with research methods used in the analysis of the world economy from global, regional, national, and subnational standpoints;


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

Mode of instruction

The course will be taught as an upper-level elective seminar and will consist of teaching presentations by the instructor as well as regular discussion. Students can expect several hours a week of stimulating research and a small but interesting amount of exploratory research.


Assessment for this course is organized around a series of regular and periodic outputs. Listed below along with their relative weight in percentages (%), these include:

(1) Timely submission of ten (10) journal entries on roughly two pages in length to be submitted in class in which students will reflect, comment on, and raise questions from the readings for discussion (40 %) (These are due on a weekly/bi-weekly basis; students will received feedback on quality by the mid-term, but the journals will be evaluated as a single body of week at the end of the term.)

(2) Timely completion of four (4) discrete but related research tasks, in which students will collect and order data on a designated theme and present finding in class (20%); (These will be due in designated weeks throughout the semester beginning week 2; students will received feedback on quality by the mid-term, but these will be evaluated as a single body of work alongside the term paper/project (below)).

(3) One term paper/project of 2500-3500 words drawing on points 1 and 2 above (20%)
This will be due at the end of the term.

(4) An in-class final exam in which students will reflect on their learning experience and demonstrate their command over the course materials (20%)


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

Global Political Economy (5th Edition)
Evolution and Dynamics
Author(s): Robert O'Brien, Marc Williams


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


This is an intensive course that will require students to complete their readings in a timely manner. The readings are designed to be lively, but students who fail to complete the readings in a timely matter will find it difficult to pass the course.