Yansane - IR728 International Political Economy





The course is a seminar for graduate students. The major objective of the seminar is to foster an understanding of the major analytical and policy issues related to International Political Economy (IPE). The seminar will, first examine the alternative theories of IPE derived from the mutual interactions of state and market, economics and politics, and analyze the significance of these relationships. It will cover the history, i.e., the expansion of the world political economy, international trade, monetary affairs and economic development in light of contemporary globalization versus nation-states. Second, the course will discuss the global actors such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), the regional trading blocks and regional economic communities, transnational corporations (TNCs), the International Monetary Fund and global finance and investment. Finally will be covered other global issues related to trade (legitimate and illicit), finance, and development and their impact on poverty, inequality, environment, climate change, etc. Attention will be given to both the theoretical and empirical content of the readings. Discussions and papers will address functional matters, such as trade, finance and aid policies, military assistance and strategies and the operation of decision-making in IPE.

Other objectives include: first, to provide the students with an overview of all the themes of IPE and help them to expand their own understanding of IPE; second, to enable students to have theoretically informed analyses of IPE topics; third, to develop student critical reading, thinking, and writing. The ultimate objectives of the course are to be reached in large measure by a blend of lectures, note-taking, extensive reading, class discussions, written book reviews and required reading summaries.

The course is multidisciplinary and draws upon economics, political science other social sciences and policy-oriented materials. The successful completion of this graduate seminar or the expected learning outcome should enable students to understand, analyze, and assess the issues and problems of IPE and their significance in evaluating globalization of production, global economic growth and governance, regionalism, and the debates on free trade, protection, inequality, poverty, and the relationship between poor and rich countries, etc.


The course is offered for three (3) units. There will be three (3) hours of lecture and/or discussions. Discussions are an integral part of the course. Sometimes there will be audio-visual illustrations and films. Students will be evaluated on their performance on three presentations or their discussions of assigned readings, three book reviews, and three major press analyses, final term papers and class participation.

1. Each student, will be responsible for at least three (3) presentations on IPE book reviews, three (3) presentations on required readings, and on three (3) major press analyses in the realm of IPE (globalization of production or finance, trade, investment, etc.), and for beginning a discussion session on the week's reading assignments by setting forth the major issues. Students will hand in three book reviews and three article- reviews. Books to be reviewed will be selected from three (3) lists of books provided by the instructor, on the syllabus. Articles will be chosen by the students from major presses (Financial Times, Washington Post, New York Times, etc.).

2. Each student will write a major paper (c. 20 pages) on a problem, based on an outline approved by the instructor. Papers are due one week before the final week. The student is expected to draw upon economic, political, historical, sociological, business and policy oriented materials.

3. Students with little or no background in IPE are encouraged to acquire an d read entirely David N. Balaam and Michael Veseth (Fourth Edition), Introduction to International Political Economy, (Upper Side River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008).

4. Outline of Graduate Papers

Select a hypothesis in the field of economic, political, and business development (for graduate students). Formulate it in an operational way and state the alternative hypotheses that purport to explain the phenomena. State the implications of the hypotheses. Design and present data, and how the hypothesis could be tested. (You do not have to do the calculations or conduct significance tests; only describe the method you would follow, present your data and state your reasons for expecting that the test would be a good one). AT the beginning of the third week, provide the instructor with a synopsis of your paper, including title, statement of hypothesis, and possible bibliography. Please discuss with the instructor the paper that you propose to write no later than the end of the second week of class. The paper will account for 50% of the final grade, with the three book reviews, three article reviews, and class participation making the balance.


The instructor will be giving formal lectures on “Methodology”, and “Background Readings”, and on “Some Required Readings”, for the first two or three weeks. Afterwards, he will facilitate class presentations and discussions by students.

Students will have to do several readings: first, select one required book reading from each of the six sets from the “Required Readings for Purchase”; second, readings for the three (3) book reviews, selected from the three (3) Lists of Books to Be Reviewed”, provided on the syllabus; third, readings from the press which cover IPE, for three (3) major press analyses to the class.

Students making presentations on the “Required Readings”, “Book Review Readings” and “IPE Short Commentaries on Press Analysis” should and must write three (3) page-summaries to be distributed to the class.

Presentations should be for 15 minutes, and should, by no means, exceed 30 minutes, to allow enough time for discussions. The summaries and presentations should cover the following: first, the author’s purpose, method and thesis; second, a short summary of the literature to be reviewed and the major themes supporting the thesis; third, your critical analysis of the work (interactions and perceptions to the author’s thesis); finally, come up with the conclusion. This should be the general format of the book review, presentations, and press analyses.

The final paper should be submitted in hard copy, one week before the final period of the Semester, even though the course has no final examination.

Nobody will be penalized for her/his ideas, and positions, given the fact that we are all coming from different cultural and academic backgrounds and experiences and that IPE has its share of controversial issues. The Seminar will make all of us richer in ideas and thoughts. The only requirement is to make our discussions conform to the scientific method. In other words, cogent writing and discussions, backed by evidences, should be rewarded. Students should avoid plagiarism which results in failure!


1a) David N. Balaam and Michael Veseth, Introduction to International Political Economy. (Fourth Edition). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2008. (OPTIONAL BACKGROUND READING); and or

1b) John Ravenhill, (Ed.), Global Political Economy. (Second Edition). Oxford University Press, 2008. (REQUIRED READING).

2a) Irwin A. Douglas, Free Trade Under Fire, Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2002; or

2b Brian Hocking and Steven McGuire, (Eds.), Trade Politics: International, Domestic and Regional Perspectives. (2nd Edition). London: Routledge, 2004; or

2c) Timothy Joslyn, Donna Roberts and David Orden, Food Regulation and Trade: Toward a Safe and Open Global System. Washington, DC: The Institute for International Economics, 2003; or

2d) Gary Gereffi, David Spencer and Jennifer Bair, (Eds.), Free Trade and Uneven development: The North American Industry After NAFTA. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2002; or

2e) Gordon Myers, Banana Wars-The Price of Free Trade: A Caribbean Perspective. London: Zed Books, 2004.

3a) Bhagirath Lal Das, The WTO Agreements: Deficiencies, Imbalances and Required Changes. London: Zed Press, 1998; or

3b) Gary P. Sampson, Trade, Environment and the WTO: The Post Seattle Agenda. Washington, DC: The Overseas Development Council, 2000; or

3c) Kent Jones, Who’s Afraid of the WTO? Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004.

4a) David J. Saari, Global Corporations and Sovereign Nations: Collision or Cooperation? Wesport, CT: Quorum Books, 1999; or

4b) Ronnie Garcia-Johnson, Exporting Environmentalism: US Multinational Corporations in Brazil and Mexico. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2000; or

4c) David C. Korten, When Corporations Rule the World. (Second Edition). San Francisco: Kumarian Press, 2001.

5a) Steger Manfred, The New Market Ideology: Globalism. Lanham, Boulder, New York: Rowman & Little Publishers, 2002; or

5b) Robert Gilpin, Global Political Economy: Understanding International Economic Order. Princeton & Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2001; or

5c) International Forum on Globalization (IFG), Alternatives to Globalization: A Better World Is Possible. Washington, DC: IFG, 2001, or

5d) Joseph Stiglitz (JS), Globalization and Its Discontent. Chicago: Uni. Of Chicago Press, 2001.

5e) Jagdish Bhagwati, In Defense of GlobaLization, NY: Oxford University Press, 2004

6a) The World Bank, The East Asian Miracle. Washington, DC: The World Bank, 1993; or

6a) T.J. Pempel , (Ed.), The Politics of the Asian Economic Crisis. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1999.