GV441      Half Unit
States and Markets

This information is for the 2013/14 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr David Woodruff CON3.17


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Comparative Politics. This course is available on the MSc in Comparative Politics, MSc in Development Studies, MSc in Global Politics, MSc in Global Politics (Global Civil Society), MSc in Political Science and Political Economy, MSc in Public Administration and Government (LSE and Peking University) and MSc in Public Policy and Administration. This course is available as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Primarily for MSc Comparative Politics (Comparative Political Economy). Also available, based on available space and with the approval of Dr Woodruff, to other MSc Comparative Politics streams.

This course is capped at 3 groups.   The deadline for receipt of applications is Friday, 11 October 2013.

Course content

To introduce politics students to basic economic theorising; to discuss the nature of markets; review contemporary discussions regarding the role of the state in the economy; provide a comparison of the relationship of states and markets in different political settings and historical contexts. Topics: The state and the institutional foundations of markets. Pathways of development of market institutions. "Taming" markets. Varieties of capitalism. New challenges: changing corporate governance, international capital mobility, politics and economics of financial crisis.


10 hours of lectures and 15 hours of seminars in the MT. 3 hours of lectures in the ST.

Formative coursework

All students are expected to submit one non-assessed essay.

Indicative reading

Block, "The Roles of the State in the Economy." Polanyi, The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time. North. Institutions, Institutional Change, and Economic Performance; Gerschenkron. "Economic Backwardness in Historical Perspective." Hall and Soskice, "An Introduction to Varieties of Capitalism." Lazonick and O'Sullivan. "Maximizing Shareholder Value: A New Ideology for Corporate Governance."


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

Student performance results

(2009/10 - 2011/12 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 7
Merit 72.8
Pass 19.3
Fail 0.9

Key facts

Department: Government

Total students 2012/13: 44

Average class size 2012/13: 14

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Problem solving
  • Communication

Course survey results

(2010/11 - 2012/13 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 77.4%



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