Programmes

MSc International Political Economy

  • Graduate taught
  • Department of International Relations
  • Application code M1UW
  • Starting 2017

The MSc in International Political Economy (IPE) offers a multidisciplinary perspective on international economic and power relations, essential to understanding an increasingly globalised world.

The study of international political economy is the study of interactions between markets and politics; the influence of markets on politics and the influence of policy on markets. The core of IPE is international money and international finance, and there is a particular focus on the 2008 financial crisis, its causes and its consequences. Other central topics include international trade and investment, which looks at the drivers of market globalisation and factors which shape the flow of trade and investment, and the international political economy and the environment, specifically, what impedes a genuine agreement on climate change.

You may also be interested in the research stream of this programme, which is designed as a preparation for future research work. You do not need to decide whether you prefer the research stream or the non-research stream of this programme at the time that you apply – you can decide this when you submit your option choices in the Michaelmas term, normally in mid-October.

Programme details

Key facts

MSc International Political Economy
Start date 21 September 2017
Application deadline None – rolling admissions. However please note the funding deadlines
Duration 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time
Applications 2016 532 (including MSc in International Political Economy (Research))
Intake 2016 72 (including MSc in International Political Economy (Research))
Availability UK/EU: Closed
Overseas: Closed
Tuition fee UK/EU: £21,576
Overseas £21,576
Financial support Graduate support scheme (deadline 26 April 2017)
Minimum entry requirement 2:1 degree or equivalent in politics, economics, history, international relations or similar discipline
GRE/GMAT requirement None
English language requirements Standard (see 'assessing your application')
Location  Houghton Street, London

For more information about tuition fees and entry requirements, see the fees and funding and assessing your application sections.

Programme structure and courses

You will take the compulsory course and complete a 10,000-word dissertation. You will also choose courses from a range of international relations options. 

(* denotes half unit) 

International Political Economy*
Provides an advanced introduction to concepts and contending approaches in international political economy, and an overview of the evolution of international economic relations since the late 19th century.

Dissertation
An independent research project of 10,000 words on an approved topic of your choice. 

Courses to the value of one and a half units from a range of options.


You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses in the 
Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will always notify the affected parties as early as practicably possible and propose any viable and relevant alternative options. Note that that the School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to events outside of its control, which includes but is not limited to a lack of demand for a course or programme of study, industrial action, fire, flood or other environmental or physical damage to premises.

You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. Please note that changes to programmes and courses can sometimes occur after you have accepted your offer of a place. These changes are normally made in light of developments in the discipline or path-breaking research, or on the basis of student feedback. Changes can take the form of altered course content, teaching formats or assessment modes. Any such changes are intended to enhance the student learning experience. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the updated graduate course and programme information page.

Teaching and assessment

Contact hours and independent study

Within your programme you will take a number of courses, often including half unit courses and full unit courses. In half unit courses, on average, you can expect 20-30 contact hours in total and for full unit courses, on average, you can expect 40-60 contact hours in total. This includes sessions such as lectures, classes, seminars or workshops. The majority of the teaching takes place in the Michaelmas and Lent Terms. Hours vary according to courses and you can view indicative details in the Calendar within the Teaching section of each course guide.

You are also expected to complete independent study outside of class time. This varies depending on the programme, but requires you to manage the majority of your study time yourself, by engaging in activities such as reading, note-taking, thinking and research.

Teaching methods

LSE is internationally recognised for its teaching and research and therefore employs a rich variety of teaching staff with a range of experience and status. Courses may be taught by individual members of faculty, such as lecturers, senior lecturers, readers, assistant professors, associate professors and professors. Many departments now also employ guest teachers and visiting members of staff, LSE teaching fellows and graduate teaching assistants who are usually doctoral research students and in the majority of cases, teach on undergraduate courses only. You can view indicative details for the teacher responsible for each course in the relevant course guide.

Assessment

All taught courses are required to include formative coursework which is unassessed. It is designed to help prepare you for summative assessment which counts towards the course mark and to the degree award. LSE uses a range of formative assessment, such as essays, problem sets, case studies, reports, quizzes, mock exams and many others. Summative assessment may be conducted during the course and/or by final examination at the end of the course. You must also submit a 10,000-word dissertation by 29 August 2018. An indication of the formative coursework and summative assessment for each course can be found in the relevant course guide.

Academic support

You will also be assigned an academic adviser who will be available for guidance and advice on academic or personal concerns.

There are many opportunities to extend your learning outside the classroom and complement your academic studies at LSE. LSE LIFE is the School’s centre for academic, personal and professional development. Some of the services on offer include: guidance and hands-on practice of the key skills you will need to do well at LSE: effective reading, academic writing and critical thinking; workshops related to how to adapt to new or difficult situations, including development of skills for leadership, study/work/life balance and preparing for the world of work; and advice and practice on working in study groups and on cross-cultural communication and teamwork.

LSE is committed to enabling all students to achieve their full potential and the School’s Disability and Wellbeing Service provides a free, confidential service to all LSE students and is a first point of contact for all disabled students.

Preliminary reading

J Frieden  D Lake, and J B  Lawrence (eds.) International Political Economy (5th edition, W.W. Norton, 2010)

R Gilpin Global Political Economy: understanding the international economic order (Princeton University Press, 2001)

T Oatley International Political Economy: interest and institutions in the global economy (5th edition, Pearson Longman, 2012)

J Ravenhill Global Political Economy (3rd edition, Oxford Press, 2011)

A Walter and G Sen Analyzing the Global Political Economy (Princeton University Press, 2009)

Careers

The programme has provided excellent prospects for early-career graduates seeking entry to graduate programmes at top global firms, as well as for experienced graduates looking to reposition themselves for more senior roles. We have alumni in banking and financial journalism and in major consulting companies such as Ernst & Young, as well as in a wide range of governmental and non-governmental organisations throughout the world. A good number of our graduates also continue on to research degrees and the academic profession

Further information on graduate destinations for this programme

Sebastian Ortiz

MSc International Political Economy, 2011
Secretary, Permanent Mission of Paraguay to the World Trade Organization

SebastianOrtiz170x230

I chose my degree as it was closely related to my university background in economics and my career as a diplomat. I wanted to study a degree with a very strong base in economics plus some analysis of domestic and international politics. 

After finishing my master's at LSE I returned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to deal with issues in the MERCOSUR Trade Commission. My dissertation was centred on political economy aspects of the MERCOSUR's Trade Policy which was very useful for my job. 

I would advise you to take advantage of a such a large institute like LSE, go to as many public lectures as you can, stay every Friday evening at the George IV, meet as many people from different fields as you can, and do not hesitate to ask to book appointments with the academics.

I met very interesting people at LSE, made many very good friends, some of whom I still meet regularly with here in Geneva, at seminars and conferences. My time at LSE was one of the best experience of my life, one year was too short!

Support for your career

Many leading organisations give careers presentations at the School during the year, and LSE Careers has a wide range of resources available to assist students in their job search. Find out more about the support available to students through LSE Careers.

Student stories

Lauge Skovgaard

MSc International Political Economy
Copenhagen, Denmark

laugeSkovgaard170x230jpg

This is a highly demanding programme with regards to the quantity and quality of expected work on behalf of the students. This has meant very hard work, but with a very high payoff. The department has close interaction with outside practitioners and institutions in the field, which has linked our studies to practical experience during the course of the year. Interacting with brilliant students from a wide range of backgrounds, outreaching and original researchers as well as top external practitioners has made the year a great experience.

There is no doubt that the School's name, and in particular my programme's high standard, opens many doors in the private and public sector – at national as well as international level. However, my time at LSE has made me want to continue within academia for some years to come. I hope to do a PhD within this field in the near future. 

Assessing your application

We welcome applications from all suitably qualified prospective students and want to recruit students with the very best academic merit, potential and motivation, irrespective of their background.

We carefully consider each application on an individual basis, taking into account all the information presented on your application form, including your:

- academic achievement (including predicted and achieved grades)
- personal statement
- two academic references
- CV

See further information on supporting documents

You may also have to provide evidence of your English proficiency, although you do not need to provide this at the time of your application to LSE. See our English language requirements.

When to apply

Applications for this programme are considered on a rolling basis, meaning the programme will close once it becomes full. There is no fixed deadline by which you need to apply, however to be considered for any LSE funding opportunity, you must have submitted your application and all supporting documents by the funding deadline. See the fees and funding section for more details. 

Minimum entry requirements for MSc International Political Economy

Upper second class honours (2:1) degree or equivalent in politics, economics, history, international relations or a similar discipline.

Competition for places at the School is high. This means that even if you meet the minimum entry requirement, this does not guarantee you an offer of admission.

See international entry requirements

Fees and funding

Every graduate student is charged a fee for their programme.

The fee covers registration and examination fees payable to the School, lectures, classes and individual supervision, lectures given at other colleges under intercollegiate arrangements and, under current arrangements, membership of the Students' Union. It does not cover living costs or travel or fieldwork.

Tuition fees 2017/18 for MSc International Political Economy

UK/EU students: £21,576
Overseas students £21,576

Fee status

For this programme, the tuition fee is the same for all students regardless of their fee status. 
However any financial support you are eligible for will depend on whether you are classified as a Home (UK/EU) or Overseas student, otherwise known as your fee status. LSE assesses your fee status based on guidelines provided by the Department of Education.

Further information

Fees and funding opportunities

Fee reductions and rewards

Students who completed undergraduate study at LSE and are beginning taught graduate study at the School are eligible for a fee reduction of around 10 per cent of the fee.

Currently there is also an early payment reward for self-financed students who pay their tuition fees by specific dates.

Please refer to the Fees Office website for updates.

Scholarships and other funding

The School recognises that the cost of living in London may be higher than in your home town or country, and we provide over £11.5 million in scholarships each year to graduate students from the UK, EU and overseas.

This programme is eligible for needs-based awards from LSE, including the Graduate Support SchemeMaster's Awards, and Anniversary Scholarships

Selection for any funding opportunity is based on receipt of an application for a place – including all ancillary documents, before the funding deadline. 
Funding deadline for needs-based awards from LSE: 26 April 2017.

In addition to our needs-based awards, LSE also makes available scholarships for students from specific regions of the world and awards for students studying specific subject areas.

Check the latest information about scholarship opportunities

Government tuition fee loans and external funding

A postgraduate loan is available from the UK government for eligible students studying for a first master’s programme, to help with fees and living costs. Some other governments and organisations also offer tuition fee loan schemes.

Find out more about tuition fee loans
Find out more about external funding opportunities 

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