GY404      Half Unit
Inclusive Growth

This information is for the 2023/24 session.

Teacher responsible

Prof Neil Lee


This course is available on the MPhil/PhD in Economic Geography, MSc in Geographic Data Science, MSc in Local Economic Development and MSc in Urban Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


Students from across LSE have done well in GY404, but a good background in economic geography, economics, public policy, social policy or political science helps.

Course content

Policymakers globally face two linked challenges. First, they need to achieve economic growth. Development has stalled across much of the advanced world, many countries are stuck in middle-income traps, and growth has been highly uneven in the ‘developing’ world. But alongside this they need to ensure this growth translates into shared prosperity. Many countries have seen growing inequality. Where countries have achieved growth, this as too often failed to benefit workers. People’s lives are shaped by the economies of where they live, so to meet these challenges will require place based solutions from both national and local government.

GY404 is a policy focused course looking at the intersection of economic change, place, and inclusive growth. We will consider two basic questions: Can economic development be made inclusive? And, if so, how? To help answer these questions we will engage with some key themes. These include the economics of technological change and implications for both developed and less developed economies, the relationship between innovation and inequality, the creation of 'good jobs', entrepreneurship, finance and microfinance as tools for poverty reduction, and the logics of place based industrial policy


In the Department of Geography and Environment, teaching will be delivered through a combination of classes/seminars, pre-recorded lectures, live online lectures, in-person lectures and other supplementary interactive live activities.

This course is delivered via a series of seminars in Winter Term.

This course includes a reading week in Week 6 of Winter Term.

Formative coursework

GY404 is a highly interactive course where students undertake simultations based on case studies and policy activities. Students are expected to present, debate, and participate actively in seminars.

Indicative reading

Lee, N. 2024. Innovation for the masses: How to share the benefits of the tech economy. University of California Press.

OECD. 2014. All on board: Making inclusive growth happen. OECD.

Moretti, E. 2013. The New Geography of Jobs. Harcourt Mifflin. 


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

Key facts

Department: Geography and Environment

Total students 2022/23: 34

Average class size 2022/23: 35

Controlled access 2022/23: Yes

Lecture capture used 2022/23: Yes (LT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Commercial awareness
  • Specialist skills