IR455      Half Unit
Economic Diplomacy

This information is for the 2018/19 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Stephen Woolcock CLM 6.13

The course is coordinated by an LSE academic but is supported by an experienced practitioner of economic diplomacy Sir Nicholas Bayne, former UK foreign service and ambassador and Kenneth Heydon (formerly Deputy Director at the OECD in Paris).  Other full time staff currently teaching the course include Dr James Morrison.


This course is available on the MPA Dual Degree (LSE and Columbia), MPA Dual Degree (LSE and Hertie), MPA Dual Degree (LSE and NUS), MPA Dual Degree (LSE and Sciences Po), MPA Dual Degree (LSE and Tokyo), MPA in International Development, MPA in Public Policy and Management, MPA in Public and Economic Policy, MPA in Public and Social Policy, MPA in Social Impact, MSc in Global Politics, MSc in International Affairs (LSE and Peking University), MSc in International Political Economy, MSc in International Political Economy (LSE and Sciences Po), MSc in International Political Economy (Research), MSc in Theory and History of International Relations and Master of Public Administration. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

All students will be required to obtain permission from the Teacher Responsible by completing the Student Statement box on the online application form linked to course selection on LSE for you. Admission to the course is not guaranteed.  The course is primarily for students on the IPE Masters and LSE-Sciences-po Double Degree masters. 

Course content

The course introduces students to the theories and analytical frameworks relating to decision- making and negotiation in international economic relations and to apply these to cases. It includes coverage of the respective roles of the main actors, institutional settings and processes involved in domestic decision-making and international negotiation, and their interaction with each other.

The course provides students with both academic and practitioner perspectives of economic diplomacy through the integration of practitioner analysis of case studies into the course. 

The course is concerned with the process of international economic negotiations. This focus distinguishes it from other optional courses that cover more on the substance of trade, finance, money, environment, etc. No prior knowledge of economics is required to take this course. The course is concerned with decision-making and negotiation.


10 hours of lectures and 15 hours of seminars in the LT. 1 hour and 30 minutes of seminars in the ST.

There will also be a series of speakers on cases in economic diplomacy in the LT.

Students on this course will have a reading week in Week 6, in line with departmental policy. 

Formative coursework

Students will be expected to produce 1 essay in the MT.

Indicative reading

Bayne, Nicholas and Woolcock, S. The new economic diplomacy: decision-making and negotiation in international economic relations, Third edition, Ashgate, Stephen 2013.

Odell, John Negotiating the world economy  2000.

van Bergeijk Economic Diplomacy: The Issues . 2011.

Okano-Heijmans, Maaike Conceptualizing Economic Diplomacy: The Crossroads of International Relations, Economics, IPE and Diplomatic Studies 2011.

Woolcock, Stephen European Union Economic Diplomacy: the role of the EU in international economic relations, Ashgate 2013.


Exam (70%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.
Essay (30%, 2000 words) in the MT.

Key facts

Department: International Relations

Total students 2017/18: 64

Average class size 2017/18: 16

Controlled access 2017/18: Yes

Lecture capture used 2017/18: Yes (MT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication