Topics in the Political Economy of Contemporary Middle East

Key information

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Module code
FHEQ Level
Department of Economics

Module overview

Analysis of the economic development of the Middle East is taken in this second module on the applied economics of the Middle East, with a greater focus on the resource poor countries of the region.  Topics covered include:

  • The political economy of aid flow patters to the region
  • IMF and World Bank reform programmes
  • Economic Liberalisation
  • Globalisation, Food Security and Social Welfare Policies

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, students will be able to:

  • Understand the reasons why a process of economic liberalisation was needed in the MENA region.  Conceptualise the characteristics of an economic liberalisation programme and its sectoral implications.
  • Be familiar with the key debates surrounding the process of liberalisation and be able to articulate arguments both for and against differen dimensions of economic liberalisation in the context of MENA.
  • Understand the social welfare and political implications of economic reform at both a regional and country-specific level.  Present country case study examples of the economic, social and political experience of liberalisation.

Method of assessment

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

Suggested reading

  • Harrigan and El-Said, Aid and Power in the Arab World:  IMF and World Bank Policy Based Lending in the Middle East and North Africa (2009), Palgrave Macmillan
  • Harrigan, J (2014), The Political Economy of Arab Food Sovereignty, Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Richards, A.  and Waterbury, J (2006), A Political Economy of the Middle East, State:  Class and Economic Development, 2nd Edition, Boulder Colorado:  Westview Curzon Press


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