GV4F8      Half Unit
Institutions in the Global Economy

This information is for the 2015/16 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Stephanie Rickard CON6.11


This course is available on the MSc in Comparative Politics and MSc in Political Science and Political Economy. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

The course is organised around several important theoretical and empirical questions regarding the functioning of the global economy and the role of political institutions. Why do states delegate certain economic tasks and responsibilities to international institutions rather than acting unilaterally or cooperating directly? To what extent do states continue to control international organizations once authority has been delegated? To what extent do international institutions constrain national governments and their economic policies, such as trade, monetary and fiscal policy? To what extent do domestic institutions shape countries' foreign economic policies? When and under what circumstances do national governments comply with the decisions of international organizations? These questions are examined in the context of a variety of different institutions that play a role in the global economy including, for example, the World Trade Organization and the International Monetary Fund as well as domestic political institutions, such as electoral systems.


10 hours of lectures and 10 hours of seminars in the LT.

There will be a reading week in week 6 of the LT for private study and assessment preparation.

Indicative reading

Hawkins, Darren G., David A. Lake, Daniel L. Nielson, and Michael J. Tierney (2006) Delegation and Agency in International Organizations, Cambridge University Press; Ravenhill, John (2007) Global Political Economy, Oxford University Press; Rose, Andrew K. (2004) Do We Really Know That the WTO Increases Trade? American Economic Review 94(1): 98-114; Rickard, Stephanie (2010) Democratic Differences: Electoral Institutions and Compliance with GATT/WTO Agreements. European Journal of International Relations; Moravcsik, Andy (1989) Disciplining Trade Finance: The OECD Export Credit Arrangement, International Organization; Nooruddin, Irfan and Joel W. Simmons (2006). The Politics of Hard Choices: IMF Programs and Government Spending. International Organization 60: 1001-1033.


Essay (100%, 4000 words) in the ST.

Key facts

Department: Government

Total students 2014/15: 34

Average class size 2014/15: 12

Controlled access 2014/15: No

Value: Half Unit

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