Kennsluáætlun námskeiðs


ASK222F: International Political Economy

Dr. Lukas K. Danner

Fulbright-NSF Arctic Research Scholar
Centre for Arctic Studies, Institute of International Affairs 
University of Iceland

Best Way to Contact Me: Canvas Inbox
Office Hours: By Appointment

Course Time Zone: Iceland Standard Time. Course due dates are according to this time zone.

Teaching Language: English | Long Course ID: 1015ASK222F20210 | Credits: 6 Credits | Level: Graduate | Semester/ Academic Year: Spring semester/ AY2020-2021

Course Description and Purpose

This course is designed to gives students the tools and knowledge with which to evaluate the interactions between politics and the global economy. First, students will learn how international political economy (IPE) is defined and the general newer history of global market governance. Students will learn about the different theoretical perspectives explaining international political economy. With this background knowledge different questions about the global interactions between politics and the market will be analyzed and evaluated. Students will also familiarize themselves with the general historical trends in international political economy. Application of the learned theoretical perspectives will follow in different topical areas, i.e., the international financial architecture, global trade relations, international development, and topical transnational issues.

This course consists of three parts. Part I begins with a survey of contending theoretical approaches in IPE, including realist, liberal, and critical perspectives. Special focus will be given to how these various perspectives address the issue of “globalization”. Part II applies these competing perspectives to analyzing core IPE issue areas, including international monetary system, international trade, transnational corporations, and global financial crises. Part III focuses on development problems and concludes with a discussion of the governance of global economy.

Course Objectives

The primary purpose of this course is to provide students with the analytical tools to understand international political economy. In this course students will:

  1. Develop independent, abstract, and critical thinking about the interactions between politics and the economy on a global scale.
  2. Internalize the concepts and theoretical arguments about the international political economy.
  3. Apply international political economic theory to specific cases and evaluate given cases.
  4. Improve their research and writing ability when formulating complex arguments.

Important Information

Due to COVID-19, we start this course in a remote setting and meet via Zoom. For now, we will meet online via Zoom during our allotted day and time, Wednesdays, 10-12:20--until further notice. It is hard to predict what will happen in the course of the semester but I will keep everyone updated via Announcements.

Additional Course Policies

  1. Times/ Dates: All times and deadlines are given in Iceland Standard Time.
  2. Plagiarism: Copying from the textbook or cutting and pasting sections from websites or other reference materials or presenting someone else’s ideas as your own is plagiarism and will not be tolerated and will result in zero (0) points for that assignment. I recommend you review the Colorado State University writing guides page on Plagiarism. In addition, all work submitted must be original for this class.
  3. TurnItIn: This class will utilize the TurnItIn originality software—integrated with the LMS. More information can be found in the HI Course Catalogue.
  4. Readings: If you wish to purchase readings or books in order to build your own library, I encourage you to do so. However, generally, readings will be offered within Canvas for download in this course.
  5. Additional Student Services: In case you require additional services to facilitate accessibility of this course, please contact the HI Student Counselling and Career Centre
  6. Extra Credit: There is no extra-credit in this class.
  7. Changes to the Syllabus: The instructor reserves the right to modify this syllabus should the need arise.

Zoom Video Conference

This class will use Zoom for remote meetings, until further notice.

Course Prerequisites

There are no prerequisites for this course.

Proctored Exam Policy

This course does not require proctored exams.

Course Meetings & Assigned Readings

This course will meet during the Spring 2021 semester on Wednesdays between 13 January 2021 and 14 April 2021. Modality of meeting is via Zoom--until further notice. 

Course Meetings & Topics Schedule

  1. Introduction: What is IPE? (13.01.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  2. Realism, State Power, and IPE (20.01.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  3. Liberalism & Neo-liberal Institutionalism (27.01.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  4. Critical Perspectives (03.02.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  5. International Monetary System (10.02.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  6. Trade, Regionalism and Globalization (17.02.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  7. The Globalization of Finance, the 2007-2008 Financial Crisis, Sovereign Debt and Austerity (24.02.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  8. FDI, MNCs, and the Globalization of Production (03.03.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  9. The Political Economy of Development: Historical Perspective (10.03.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  10. The Political Economy of Development: Economic Growth (17.03.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  11. The Rise of China and the Global Economy (24.03.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST) 
  12. Global Economy Governance (07.04.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)
  13. Draft Papers Mini-Conference (14.04.2021 – 10:00-12:20 IST)

Assigned Readings Schedule

To access the assigned readings schedule and download readings, please navigate to "Námsefni" in our Canvas course shell online.

Course Communication

Communication in this course will take place via the Canvas Conversations Inbox. I will respond to messages within 1 business day. You may also contact me via email at  

Attendance & Participation


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this course is taught remotely with synchronous Zoom meetings every Wednesday from 10:00 to 12:20 IST--until further notice. Despite meeting remotely, students are expected to attend every class meeting via Zoom. To access the remote course meeting, the link and passcode will be shared via Canvas message and announcement the day before (Tuesday). As part of etiquette, I would strongly encourage you to turn on your camera during our class meetings. By doing so, our Zoom class would feel more like a face-to-face meeting. It will help us cultivate a sense of community. Despite meeting remotely, you will be expected to attend every class meeting, complete the reading assignments before class, and contribute to class discussion of the course material. If you are unable to attend a class meeting for any reason, please let me know at your earliest convenience via email ( 


Besides regular class attendance, high-quality contributions to class discussions are essential course requirements. This course will be run as a discussion group in which everyone is expected to participate actively and constructively. If the meetings were to be held via Zoom (to be determined), you would use the “chat” function and/or "raise hand" function on Zoom to ask questions, share your responses to the questions I pose, and make comments on the assigned readings. You can use the "raise hand" feature in Zoom if you want to ask a question or make a comment. Let’s make our lessons and discussions as engaging and rich as possible!

Please stay informed of current international political and economic events by reading The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC News, CNN, Independent, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, or The Financial Times. We will briefly discuss news of international political economy during class meetings. Attendance and participation together account for 20% (equivalent to 20 points) of your overall course grade.

Literature Review Papers & Presentations

Literature Review Papers

You are required to write a critical review of the assigned readings of two specific weeks (5 pages each paper, double-spaced). They account for 20% (equivalent to 20 points) of your overall course grade--10% (equivalent to 10 points) per paper. You may critically examine a set of arguments, and/or appraise a controversy in the literature, and/or discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the research design, and/or propose a new research project that builds on the literature. Make sure to review the sections below on "Items to consider when writing your literature review" and "Rubrics."

The paper should be submitted online in Canvas ("Verkefni" menu item > "Literature Review Papers") on the Monday before the Wednesday class meeting and shared with the whole class via email by Tuesday before Wednesday’s seminar. Use the following naming convention for attachments: FirstnameLastname#.doc, where Firstname is your first name, Lastname is your surname, and # is 1 or 2, depending on whether this is your first or second review paper.

Items to consider when writing your literature review:

  • Relevance to the assigned material: Ideas indicate that the student has read the assigned material.
  • Follows instructions: Submission adheres to general standards of what encompasses a literature review. If this is your first literature review, here are three great resources that talk about how you can go about writing one:
  • Individuality/ originality/ plagiarism: Your assignment is run against TurnItIn and, thus, it is checked for originality. Make sure you are completing this assignment individually, i.e., it is completely different from the submission of another student that is assigned for the same week. This is to say this is an individual assignment (not a group assignment). You should also use your own words as much as possible and only rely on direct quotations in exceptions.
  • Clarity and coherence.
  • Critical thinking: there is evidence that the student has adequately analyzed, synthesized, and evaluated the assigned material.
  • Your discussion includes a separate section (listed after the literature review write-up) including 7 to 10 questions for further discussion on the topic. The questions should be asked in a way that encourages discussion and cannot be answered with a factual reply. Including them at the end of your paper will help give your classmates time to think about the questions and build an opinion ahead of class.
  • Spelling, grammar: The literature review must meet university-level standards of spelling and grammar.
  • Length: The literature must be five pages and double-spaced (12-point font, Times New Roman) and must be between the limits of 1,400 and 1,600 words. Significant departure from these limits (+-50 words) could result in point deductions.
  • Please note: For full credit, you will need to submit the literature review into the assignment dropbox in Canvas on the Monday before the Wednesday you are scheduled to present. In addition, you will need to distribute the literature review by Tuesday no later than noon to all classmates in an email (refer to assignment list for email addresses).
  • Late submission is subject to point deduction.


  • Student includes critically analyzes, synthesizes and evaluates the required/ assigned readings (6 points)
  • Student clearly and coherently structures the literature review (1 point)
  • Student includes 7-10 insightful (non-factual) questions for further in-class discussion (1 point)
  • Student uses University-level standards for spelling and grammar (1 point)
  • Student uses coherent and correct in-text and bibliographic citation standards (APA, Chicago, or Turabian) and avoids direct quotes (1 point)

Literature Review Presentations

Related to the Literature Review Papers (see above), you need to give a 10-minute class presentation in the two weeks when you write your literature review papers, reviewing the literature, presenting an assessment/critique, and suggesting questions/issues for discussion. You may do so in free form or utilize a PowerPoint presentation. Each 10-minute class presentation counts 5% (equivalent to 5 points)--together 10% (equivalent to 10 points) of your overall class grade.

Items to consider when presenting in-class:

  • Relevance to the assigned material: Ideas indicate that the student has read the assigned material.
  • Content is presented in an effective manner. Do your best not to overcrowd slides. Keep it simple so your classmates can focus on what you are saying. The general rule is one slide per one minute of presentation. However, practice your presentation once or twice alone in order to be sure of the length of time.
  • Speech: Presentation given displays mastery of presentation skills and professional language.
  • Length: Your presentation needs to be 10 minutes. Significant departure from 10 minutes (+- 2 minutes) would result in point deduction.
  • Guidelines: You may present with a PowerPoint presentation. Ensure your computer setup Zoom is working correctly (microphone & webcam).


  • Student uses PowerPoint and displays mastery of presentation skills (1 point)
  • Student presents for 10 minutes or one minute within the 10-minute mark (1 point)
  • Student lists 7 to 10 insightful discussion questions in a last slide of the presentation (1 point)
  • Student presents required readings material in a critically analytical way that summarizes, synthesizes and evaluates and has coordinated with co-assigned students to avoid presenting on the same readings (or chapter of assigned readings) twice in order to avoid repetitiveness in-class (2 points)

Final Topical Paper Proposal & Paper

A 20-page paper (double-spaced, not including bibliography) on a topic related to international political economy is required. You should follow your research interest when choosing a topic for the paper. You can apply a specific theory (or theories) to an empirical problem (such as trade liberalization), or you can critically evaluate the IPE literature on an issue/topic/question area (such as developmental issues) from contending theoretical perspectives. The assigned readings will help you to frame your research questions. You can also refer to the recommended readings for fresh ideas. The goal is to complete an original paper that is potentially publishable or could lead to a large project.

A three-page paper proposal is due at 23:59 IST, 3 March 2021, via upload to Canvas ("Verkefni" menu item > "Three-Page Paper Proposal"). In the proposal, you need to clearly state your research question(s), main argument(s)/hypotheses, theoretical framework, and research methods. A one-page bibliography should also be attached. Your three-page paper proposal counts 10% (equivalent to 10 points) of your overall class grade. 

Below are some articles which may help you with your research design:

  • Fearon, James D. 1991. “Counterfactuals and Hypothesis Testing in Political Science.” World Politics 43 (02): 169-195.
  • Geddes, Barbara. 1990. “How the Cases You Choose Affect the Answers You Get: Selection Bias in Comparative Politics.” Political Analysis 2 (1): 131-150.
  • McDermott, Rose. 2002. “Experimental Methodology in Political Science.” Political Analysis 10 (4): 325-342.
  • Odell, John S. 2001. “Case Study Methods in International Political Economy.” International Studies Perspectives 2 (2): 161-176.

You will need to distribute your DRAFT paper to the whole class by 10:00, 13 April 2021 (the day before our last/ thirteenth class meeting) via email. At that time, the expectation is not that it is at the 20-page count yet and it does not have to be completed--it is a DRAFT. We will have a mini conference for everyone to present their paper to the class on our last class meeting on 14 April 2021. The conference will mimic the format of annual conferences of academic/ professional associations to prepare you for real professional presentations. You should prepare PowerPoint slides and a 10-12 minutes presentation. Your 10-12-minute draft paper class presentation counts 5% (equivalent to 5 points) of your overall class grade. Comments from your peers will be welcome and come in handy when completing your draft paper during the non-teaching/ exam period of the Spring 2021 semester. A revised paper, i.e., your final 20-page topical paper, which should incorporate the comments received, is due by 23:59 IST on 10 May 2021 via upload to Canvas ("Verkefni" menu item > "Final Topical Paper"). Your final paper count 35% (equivalent to 35 points)--together with the three-page proposal and 10-12 minute draft paper presentation 50% (equivalent to 50 points) of your overall class grade.

Important Dates and Deadlines

Class Meetings (Participation & Attendance):

  • 13 January 2021 (Wednesday) – First class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 20 January 2021 (Wednesday) – Second class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 27 January 2021 (Wednesday) – Third class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 3 February 2021 (Wednesday) – Fourth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 10 February 2021 (Wednesday) – Fifth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 17 February 2021 (Wednesday) – Sixth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 24 February 2021 (Wednesday) – Seventh class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 3 March 2021 (Wednesday) – Eighth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 10 March 2021 (Wednesday) – Ninth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 17 March 2021 (Wednesday) – Tenth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 24 March 2021 (Wednesday) – Eleventh class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 31 March 2021 (Wednesday) – No class meeting due to Easter Break Holiday.
  • 7 April 2021 (Wednesday) – Twelfth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 14 April 2021 (Wednesday) – Thirteenth class meeting from 10:00 - 12:20 IST.
  • 21 April 2021 (Wednesday) – No class meeting due to End of Teaching Period on 16 April.
  • 28 April 2021 (Wednesday) – No class meeting due to Examination Period; focus on final topic paper.
  • 5 May 2021 (Wednesday) – No class meeting due to Examination Period; focus on final topic paper.


Literature Review Papers:

  • 20 January 2021-7 April 2021 – Two Literature Review Papers due two days prior to two different meetings (to be assigned during first class meeting), 10:00 - 12:20 IST.


Literature Review Presentations:

  • 20 January 2021-7 April 2021 – Two Literature Review Presentations on two different meetings (to be assigned during first class meeting), 10:00 - 12:20 IST.


Final Assignment (Proposal & Paper):

  • 3 March 2021 – Three-page topical paper proposal due by 23:59 IST.
  • 14 April 2021 - Class presentations of draft papers, 10:00-12:20 IST.
  • 10 May 2021 – Twenty-page topical paper due by 23:59 IST.


Important University Dates and Deadlines:

  • 11 January 2021–16 April 2021 – Teaching period (Spring 2021)
  • 21 January 2021 – Final day to review course registration (Spring 2021)
  • 1 February 2021 – Final day to withdraw from Spring semester courses/examinations
  • 10–15 February 2021 – Mid-semester evaluation of teaching and courses
  • 1 March 2021 – Final day to apply for special needs services at HI Student Counselling and Career Centre
  • 31 March 2021–6 April 2021 – Easter Break Holiday (both days included)
  • 8–24 April 2021 – Teaching and course evaluation survey
  • 25 April 2021–10 May 2021 – Examination period (Spring 2021)


Course Grades Distribution Table
Course Requirements Points
Attendance & Participation 20
Literature Review Paper (1 of 2) 10
Literature Review Presentation (1 of 2) 5
Literature Review Paper (2 of 2) 10
Literature Review Presentation (2 of 2) 5
Three-page Topical Paper Proposal 10
Draft Topical Paper Presentation 5
Twenty-page Topical Paper (Due During Exam Period) 35


Final Grades Distribution Table

Grade Range Course Points Grade Range Course Points
First class with distinction 9.00-10.00 90-100 Second class 6.00-7.24 70-79
First class 7.25-8.99 80-89 Third class 5.00-5.99 60 - 69