Trade, Development and the Environment

  • Summer schools
  • Department of International Relations
  • Application code SS-IR120
  • Starting TBC
  • Short course: Closed
  • Location: Houghton Street, London

Please note: This course will not be running as part of the 2021 programme. However, you may be interested in our confirmed courses.

Some of the most complex problems in global politics exist at the nexus between international trade, development and environment.

While globalisation has made countries ever more interdependent, the capacity of the international system to deal with global challenges remains limited. A wide range of global problems still awaits effective international solutions – from the depletion of natural resources and global climate change to the creation of an effective and fair trading system and the promotion of economic development.

This course examines the global politics of trade, development and the environment, against the background of continued economic globalisation and the emergence of new forms of global governance.

Session: TBC
Dates: TBC
Lecturer: Dr Robert Falkner


Programme details

Key facts

Level: 100 level

Fees: Click here for information

Lectures: 36 hours 

Classes: 18 hours

Assessment*: Written work and one written examination

Typical credit**: 3-4 credits (US) 7.5 ECTS points (EU)

*Assessment is optional

**You will need to check with your home institution

More information on exams and credit



Programme structure

The course is divided into three parts: the first part introduces the theory and history of trade policy, economic development and environmental protection. The second part investigates the ways in which key actors in global politics – states, NGOs, global corporations and international organisations – are shaping outcomes in international policy-making.

The final part examines the potential for effective global governance in selected case-studies: the global politics of climate change; the fight against deforestation; and the international trade conflict over genetically modified (GM) food.


Course outcomes

The course aims to promote a better understanding of how we can reconcile the competing objectives of free trade, environmental sustainability and poverty alleviation.


With a vibrant research culture, the LSE Department of International Relations is one of the oldest and largest in the world, and remains a leading world centre for the development of the subject. Its reputation for international excellence was recognised in the 2014 Research Assessment Exercise, the LSE Government and International Relations Departments' joint submission was ranked first in the UK for the percentage of its research graded world leading or internationally excellent (88%). LSE also came top in the Politics and International Studies REF panel in terms of the most research publications graded “world leading” (4*); the absolute number of top-rated research outputs.         

LSE’s Department of International Relations ranked 5th in the world in the 2018 QS World University ranking for Politics and International Studies.

On this three-week intensive programme, you will engage with and learn from full-time lecturers from the LSE’s international relations faculty.

Reading materials

Falkner, Robert (ed), The Handbook of Global Climate and Environment Policy, Cheltenham: John Wiley & Sons, 2016 (paperback).

Ravenhill, John (ed), Global Political Economy, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2020 (6th edition).

*A more detailed reading list will be supplied prior to the start of the programme

**Course content, faculty and dates may be subject to change without prior notice

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How to Apply

Related Programmes

Governing Climate and Environmental Change: Science, Policy and Politics

Code(s) SS-IR104

Development in the International Political Economy

Code(s) SS-IR207

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