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International Trade Policy

Course Code: PUBLG110

Course Tutor: Dr Outi Keranen (Department of Political Science)

Assessment: One 3,000 word essay

Credit Value: 15

About this course

The causes and consequences of trade liberalization are both subjects of lengthy debates. Under what conditions is free trade possible? And, under what conditions is it desirable? This course explores the various answers that scholars have provided to these questions. We attempt to reconcile competing perspectives on trade through a careful assessment of the available evidence.

The course is divided into two parts. The first part focuses on the factors that shape market liberalization. We investigate whether formal institutions (and the rules they establish to govern markets) successfully promote trade. We also explore the extent to which conflict dampens cross border flows of goods and services. The second section shifts to the consequences free trade has on a variety of policy domains. Is liberalization welfare-enhancing? Or, are critics of globalization right to be sceptical?

By the end of this course students will be able to:

  • Assess the validity of theories and concepts in light of this evidence.
  • Offer new insights in the politics of free trade and globalization.

Students are strongly advised against taking both PUBLG110 and PUBLG050 as there are substantive overlaps. Consult the reading lists for further information.

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School of Public Policy,
The Rubin Building,
29/31 Tavistock Square,
London, WC1H 9QU.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 4999,
Fax: +44 (0)20 7679 4969,

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Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 4982/4950

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Page last modified on 03 sep 13 09:55

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