Module code: POL2038

Module Overview

This module enables students to gain a solid understanding of key theories of International Political Economy (IPE) such as Mercantilism, Liberalism and Marxism. It strongly emphasises the political, philosophical and ethical aspects of IPE and is therefore more in-line with studies of Political Theory and Philosophy rather than Classical Economics.  The acquired knowledge should be applied in a critical fashion for the analysis of case studies. Multi-national corporations and institutions in the International Trade and Monetary System are introduced as key actors in the international political economic environment. Students will be able to discuss and debate the role of these institutions in the development of, and their behaviour during, crises, with focus on the Asia-Pacific region. Current and future challenges to the status quo of IPE are discussed as well.

Module provider


Module Leader

KAEDING Malte (Politics)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

Module cap (Maximum number of students): 60

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 128

Lecture Hours: 11

Seminar Hours: 11

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Topics discussed are likely to include but not be limited to the following:

  • Theories of IPE

  • The international trade system

  • The international monetary system

  • Multi-national cooperation

  • Developmental strategies

  • New challenges

The above module content will be discussed at both the theoretical and empirical levels. Students are therefore expected to develop their theoretical understandings of IPE and apply these to selected case studies and related evidence.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Oral exam or presentation GROUP PRESENTATION 20
Examination 1 HOUR EXAM 60

Alternative Assessment

alternative assessment is a mini-essay on the group presentation, (800 words) 20%

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

  • Critical engagement with the relevant literature, e.g. to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of IPE

  • Demonstrate understanding and capacity to apply theoretical arguments to the analysis of a country case study in East Asia

  • Demonstrate the ability to group work and a critical analysis in an engaging presentation

  • Capacity to deliver a focused critical analysis of a problem related to the action of IPE actors and a country case study in East Asia in a short written essay (supporting documentation)

  • Capacity to provide critical analysis of a topic in IPE in an essay.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Supporting documentation of presentations

  • Group presentation

  • Exam

  • (All details above)

Assessment deadlines advised prior to the beginning of each semester.

Formative assessment and feedback

Students will receive verbal feedback on their performance during lectures/seminars and in one to one meetings. Additionally, students will receive detailed written feedback on their group presentation and individual feedback on their supporting documentation and their essay by the module leader. They also receive written feedback on the presentations by peers. Furthermore summative work will include feedback summarised in a cover sheet. Feedback is module-specific but is also designed to be used for feedforward to other aspects of the degree programme as well.

Module aims

  • To introduce students to the main theoretical approaches and philosophical underpinning s of International Political Economy (IPE)
  • To familiarise students with major debates in IPE and the contribution of IPE to International Politics
  • To show the importance to IPE debates and their theoretical underpinnings for the analysis of current developments in international and domestic political and economic debates
  • To define the features and impact of actors in IPE and to illustrate this which country case studies in East Asia.
  • To train students in the understanding, description, comparison and analysis of politico-economic development in IPE.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Critically reflect on major theoretical perspectives of International Political Economy (IPE) KCP
002 Identify and evaluate major IPE theories and their contribution to understanding of the world with special focus on the politics and international relations of the Asia-Pacific region KCP
003 Gain a deeper understanding of the of the economic forces that shape international relations and communicate this to a lay audience KCPT
004 Demonstrate the ability to analyse a case study, applying theoretical frameworks to empirical evidence KCPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

The teaching strategy follows a specifically developed model of engagement with students. This includes a discursive teaching style in which borders between lectures and seminars are fluid. The lectures/seminars will consciously not use any electronic support systems such Microsoft PowerPoint etc and instead focus on engaging students and on their active participation. Hence students will be expected to actively follow and also contribute to discussions during classes based on the reading material and their anticipated knowledge of current affairs. For post-class preparation brief lecture summaries are made available via the virtual learning environment. Students are constantly encouraged to formulate their own lines of enquiry, thus developing and testing their skills in respect of making appropriate critical judgments in respect of both theory and empirics. Following initial weeks of theoretical discussions in combined lecture/seminars key actors in IPE will be discussed in a lecture, which is followed by a group presentation by students on a specific aspect of the actors impact on a country case. The presentations are assessed and they are accompanied by a student-led discussion on the topic.

The learning and teaching methods include: lectures/seminars, presentations, student-led discussions, independent study, enquiry-based learning and prescribed reading. Classes are run in 2 hour sessions over an 11 week period.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: POL2038

Other information

This module has a capped number and may not be available to ERASMUS and other international exchange students. Please check with the International Engagement Office email:

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
International Relations BSc (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics BSc (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Public Affairs MPA 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics and Economics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Politics and Sociology BSc (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
English Literature with Politics BA (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.