Institutions and Governance

Key information

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Module code
FHEQ Level
Department of Economics

Module overview

This course is one of two core courses of the MSc Global Economic Governance. This course is designed to make students aware of current institutional economics and governance debates on the governance and institutional structures necessary for growth and development. The course will develop a thorough understanding of the theoretical underpinnings of competing policy positions and students will be expected to develop a rounded and critical approach for evaluating global and national governance policies.

Topics covered will include the property rights transition in developing countries and policies that are attempting to manage this transition, the debates on horizontal versus vertical technology acquisition strategies and the relationship with the global trade architecture and organizations such as the WTO, intellectual property rights and the underlying theories of innovation-Schumpeterian rents and the relationships with TRIPs and IPR treaties, the global discourse on corruption and rent seeking and the underlying theoretical debates on the political economy of corruption, democratization and the competing theories linking democracy to economic growth, including the policy implications of the analysis of clientelism, limited access orders and political settlements.

Students pursuing a degree external to the Department of Economics should contact the convenor for approval to take this module.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

On successful completion of the course, a student should be able to demonstrate the ability to:

  • use the analytical frameworks necessary for evaluating contemporary debates on governance, institutions and related policies.
  • recognize and analyse competing perspectives on governance and global institutions, their intellectual origins and their theoretical underpinnings.
  • analyse problems of the implementation and enforcement of institutional and governance policies, in particular in the area of global economic governance.
  • understand the historical evolution of international governance structures and policies, their different strands and interpretations, and the political drivers and processes behind contemporary global economic governance structures.
  • critically analyse core areas of current global and national governance processes and debates
  • differentiate between different levels of global economic governance (national, international, regional) and between different types of governance (formal and informal, public and private sector-driven), their interaction and potential trade-offs.
  • apply this training to critically engage with contemporary governance reform proposals at national and global levels.

Method of assessment

Assessment weighting: Exam 70% / coursework 30% (1 essay 2500 words). All coursework is resubmittable.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules