Course Structure

University of Glasgow

  • The Globalised Economy
    This course will examine the nature and development of the globalised economy and explore the concept of globalisation and the economic theories used to explain its development. Issues to be investigated include the process of globalisation in comparative perspective, the participation of various institutions at both micro-economic and macro-economic levels, the variety and diversity inherent in globalisation and the impact on economic performance of various economies in the global system.
  • Global Varieties of Capitalism in Historical Perspective (taught by Göttingen)
    A survey of research in the varieties of capitalism. The course provides theoretical approaches, emphasising the role of actors and institutions in economic development. Comparing European, Asian, Latin and North American economies, the course explores differences and similarities between liberal and coordinated market economies. Special emphasis will be given to questions of innovation and relative stagnation of “Rhenish Capitalism” in various branches of industry within a comparative framework.

Universitat de Barcelona

  • Companies in Emerging Sectors
    The main objective of the course is to understand the process of creation of new enterprises in emerging sectors through real cases. Students will be able to learn from the experience of founders or managers of new organisations, which are individuals who have gone through the process of creation or growth of new businesses.
  • Creative Cities: Intervention Models and Entrepreneurial Dynamics
    The most up-to-date traits of dynamic cities are presented in the context of economic globalisation. In the 21st century, interdependence on a country and city scales, flexible work and networking, delocalisation, the new comparative advantages become new topics. Particularly, the new formulations presented by the processes of clusterisation are studied, in their search for new synergies between creative and innovative businesses. In this context, talent and innovation flows (open innovation) acquire new dimensions. The territory has not lost relevance in the new competitiveness specific to globalisation. However, public authorities use new mechanisms together with traditional ones, to become a node in the reception of business talent. In this block, we study traditional and innovative ways to generate entrepreneurial dynamics in the territory.  Case studies of Barcelona, Helsinki, and Milan are presented prior to student presentations on cities and their policies and programmes in Europe.
  • Family Business: Innovation and Globalisation
    The overall objective of the course is to provide conceptual and empirical tools that allow us to highlight the importance of family businesses in developing long-term innovation, both in developed economies and in the so-called emerging economies of the world.
  • Port Cities in Historical Perspective (taught by Rotterdam)
    This course offers an overview of the role of port cities as central nodes in international social, economic and cultural networks since 1500. Through their extensive maritime trade network port cities provide a window on a wider world. As gateways they generate opportunities for the establishment of widespread international communities. Port cities are places of transhipment of goods, but the extensive maritime networks resulting from such trade connections also generated innovations, as international operating merchants used these networks to transfer technological knowledge and information. Already in pre-modern times proto-global networks influenced local innovations. For instance seventeenth century Rotterdam shows how an international merchant and refugee network, comprising of French and British scholars, created an early centre of Enlightenment. The nineteenth century has been called the age of port cities, and indeed in this period such cities more then ever became international centres of trade and cultural contacts. In the twentieth century, however, port cities faced enormous economic, social and infrastructural challenges. Despite, or due to, these challenges, post-industrial port societies are still recognised as important hub cities not just of goods, but also and maybe even primarily of knowledge. Students will learn how these creative urban communities adapted to different historical contexts and reacted to long-term developments.

Erasmus University Rotterdam:
Pathway A “Global History and Creative Industries”

  • Mapping Global Order
    This course combines two specialisations: International Relations Theory and World History (or Global History). The perspective of the course is the highest possible level of international relations and global interactions, including empires, regions or continents. The two course books are examples of this type of historical research. Besides the course books, we shall discuss scholars that have produced historical perspectives on the rise and decline of empires and regions since about 1600 until present. Their publications contain global visions, covering both western and non-western countries. All authors use theories and/or paradigms to explain the history of these empires and regions. The focus is therefore on ‘Big questions, large theories and huge comparisons’. Some questions we will ask: What general theory or model is presented in the book? What is precisely new and innovative about the book? What is the motor behind historical processes and in what direction are we developing? Has the book stimulated related research by other scholars? How to relate these theories with research on lower levels of analysis, including states, NGO’s and Multinational Corporations? What can we learn from these books for our own research (e.g. MA thesis)?
  • International Relations Theory
    The Master Global History and International Relations attempts to combine history and theory. In this course the focus is on theory: International Relations Theory (IRT). We will, however, try to connect theory and history, more particularly the problem of using theory in historical research. We hope that this may help you to write your MA thesis research proposal in the Research Workshop. The Oxford Handbook of International Relations (2008) offers a comprehensive overview of the field of international relations. It debates the nature of the field, critically engages with the major theories, and examines the field’s relation with other disciplines. This course studies and discusses selected articles of the Oxford Handbook to introduce the subject of international relations studies. The selection of chapters is complemented by a series of articles on Non-Western International Relations, focusing on East-Asia. During class we will apply theories of international relations to historical and contemporary issues, like the ‘The Opium Wars in China in the 19th century’, ‘The Nuclear Threat of North Korea’, ‘Somalia: a failed state’ and ‘The Rise of China’.
  • Creative Industries in the Global Economy (taught by Glasgow)
    Cultural and creative industries are increasingly recognised as important generators of revenues and jobs, as well as powerful drivers of cultural globalisation, especially as the world moves into the digital age. One 2015 survey estimated that they created $2.2 trillion in revenue and around 30 million jobs. The high profile of multinational media companies belies the diversity and multipolar nature of the creative industries.  This course examines the growth of the global creative industry, their relationships to cities or creative clusters, and the debates surrounding its increasing prominence in development, cultural branding, its monetisation, and the idea of “creative class.”
  • Research workshops to prepare for master level thesis
    Research methods workshops will be provided in order to prepare students for their master level thesis. It is mandatory to take one of these workshops. The workshops you will be able to choose between are outlined below.
  • Histories of Local Creativities
    The term Creative Industries is a relatively recent concept coined in the late 1990s by new labour in Britain. Ever since this contested concept has evolved into an important policy instrument of national and local governments, the European Union, and United Nations, as well as a lively academic discourse. In this workshop we will critically assess the impact and the implementation on a local, national and supranational level of this policy instrument. Academic texts will be compared with policy and consultancy texts, and the concept will be discussed in a historical, social and economic context. Finally, the workshop aims to historicize the concept and explore the historical roots of the creative industries and aims to analyse different sectors of the industry, including fashion, art markets, film, radio, television, music, design, theatre, tourism and video games.
  • Rise and Fall of the American Empire
    Both in military and economic terms the United States of America grew into the most powerful empire of the world during the twentieth century. Just like the British Empire a century ago, the United States endeavoured to bring free markets, the rule of law, and democracy to the rest of the world. However, at the beginning of the twentieth first century, America’s military, political and economic power is seriously challenged. Rising economies like China and India threaten its economic position. Simultaneously, the American empire shows signs of military overstretch. This research workshop will explore the rise and possible fall of the American colossus in a historical context.
  • Maritime History and Port Cities
    In the 19th century, the introduction of steam power and the electronic telegraph changed the world dramatically. The transfer of goods, passengers and information accelerated, connecting people worldwide who had never been linked before. These changes had a massive impact, economically, socially and culturally. In the late 20th century similar developments occurred, inciting the next stage of globalisation. The impressive developments of both periods as well as their dramatic consequences are the central theme of the course. The focus will be on port cities, their maritime connections with the wider world overseas and their international relation with the hinterland. The port of Rotterdam will serve as the Dutch example. Singapore, New York, Shanghai, London, Hamburg, Antwerp or any other maritime hub may act as its international parallel.
  • History of Cultural Difference
    This course deals with constructs of culture and of cultural difference in early modern and modern history within the context of European expansion and colonial order as well of in the context of diaspora and migration. Principal concepts such as “culture” and “identity” will be critically reviewed, tracing its uses in the various contexts. The following twin notions will be dealt with: culture-identity, difference-equality, majority-minority, native-migrant, insiders-outsiders, orientalism-occidentalism.

Georg-August Universität Göttingen:
Pathway B “Global Markets and Development”

  • Global History of Marketing and Mass Consumption
    The course will familiarise students with basic aspects of the development of mass marketing structures in the 19th and 20th century. Special emphasis will be on rise of the advertising and consulting industries as creative centres of modern consumer capitalism. Texts and discussion will focus particularly on transnational exchanges, the global role of the American consumer society and regional differences and variations in consumer culture. In many industries, marketing long had to pursue global strategies with strong regional and local accents.
  • Immigrant Entrepreneurship
    The seminar will introduce students to theories of entrepreneurship, migration and immigrant entrepreneurship. In what ways and why are business people with a migration background different from native entrepreneurs? The seminar will then move on to empirical cases studies from the early modern period to the present time. The examples are taken from different continents and economic sectors. They cover early modern trade diasporas and the transnational banking systems of the 19th century, the role of Japanese immigrants in the interwar USA and the experience of Cuban refugees in the postwar era. The last third of the seminar will cover contemporary developments and look at immigrant entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley and the Turkish business community in Germany among other cases.
  • Topics in Globalisation (taught by Barcelona)
    The course offers insights into the global entanglements of markets and business sectors such as, for example, the energy industry. The course analyses the interplay of economic and governmental actors as well as non-governmental organisations in changing global markets. Special attention will be paid to global differences between industrialised countries and resource rich countries, between centres and peripheries of the global economy.

Please note that optional courses are subject to change and will be confirmed ahead of arrival at each institution.

University of Glasgow

Recommended optional courses:

  • Globalisation and Labour
    This course examines the core human dimension of the growth of the globalised economy: its impact on labour, meaning both employment for money wages, and the collective organisation of workers in trade unions. It relates the organisation, rewards and problems of labour – including class, gender and racial inequalities – to the competitive pressures of the integrated, globalised economy.  It examines changes in the organisation of work arising from globalisation, including migration of labour as well as capital, analyses the impact of globalisation on the conditions of labour, including monetary rewards and social benefits, and finally explores the changing collective identities and institutions of workers in the globalised economy.
  • Latin American Development from Independence to the Present
    The course will consider some of the main trends and themes in the economic development of Latin America. The issues to be explored are the role of geography, the environment, factor endowments, institutions, policies and international factors, in the long run development path of Latin America. We will consider the protracted character of Latin America’s inequality and political instability, the macroeconomics of industrialisation, the political economic nature of Latin American populism, the recurrent financial crises and persistent macroeconomic instability. The course will critically evaluate the concept that Latin America ‘fell behind’ the US in terms of economic growth and political stability, applying broader theories of (under)development to Latin America throughout the 19th and 20th centuries.
  • Technology Transfer in the Global Economy
    This course examines the notion of technology transfer, how it has taken place over the past two centuries, and how it has been shaped by the emergence of big business.

Other optional courses:

  • There may be other optional courses available, to be confirmed upon registration.

Universitat de Barcelona

  • Global Health
    The course deals with the main health problems and challenges in today’s world. The topics studied are the main actors and architecture of global health; health regulation and financial mechanisms to fight pandemic; the social determinants of health; the economic dimension of health; access to medication; climate change and health.
  • Latin America
    In this course the focus are the economic concepts, theories, events, socio-political actors and processes relevant in Latin America. It includes an overview of the geography and history of Latin America, an analysis of the main economic problems of the area, and of the policies implemented to deal with poverty and inequality. Finally the economic integration processes in course (NAFTA, ALCA, CAN, MERCOSUR) will be examined critically.
  • Topics in International Economics
    New realities and new rules: internationalisation and globalisation. International trade: classical analysis and new realities. Trade in tasks and global value chains. Competitiveness. Distributive effects of globalisation. International trade system: Protectionism and regionalism in the world economy. Macroeconomics and international finance. Exchange rates’ role. International financial system and its possible reforms. External imbalances in the global economy. International financial crisis and post-crisis. Monetary integration: the experience of the euro.
  • Topics in International Politics
    The course will analyse the contemporary international system in a process of globalisation, the players involved in this system, their typologies and relational processes, the structural trends of change and continuity in the system. Empirical case studies will be examined, with special attention to the Europeist process, its nature and functions in the global system
  • Consultancy projects and internships
    Instead of studying optional courses during the semester, you may have the option to undertake a Consultancy Project in the month of January, before classes begin, or in June, after classes finish. There are also some opportunities to undertake a credit-bearing internship during the semester.

Other optional courses may be available.

Erasmus University Rotterdam:
Pathway A “Global History and Creative Industries”

  • Business History of Fashion
    Fashion has often been studied from a cultural or costume history perspective. This course aims to highlight other important aspects of fashion and focuses on the fashion industry. The main objective of this minor is to gain insight into the business historical dimensions of the fashion industry and the importance of fashion for the global and local economy. It delves into the history of fashion companies and intermediaries, the economic characteristics of the fashion products and its markets. Students will thus study past and recent developments in the fashion industry. They will gain a historical, business, economic perspective of the fashion industry through a mix of lectures, seminars, guest lecturers and field trips. The main objective is to look into the history of the fashion industry and the world behind the glamorous catwalks and shiny magazines. It aims to analyse fashion from a business history perspective, to look for similarities and differences with other industries.
  • Spaces and Places of Fashion
    The global fashion industry is recognized as a key driver of not only revenue but also creativity. For the year 2018, Statista has stated that global revenues in the sector will amount to almost US $500 billion with the major markets for this year predicted to be the Chinese, followed by American and English. The fashion industry, with its increasing reliance on digital technology and global creation revolves around a myriad of key locations from factories to retail markets based thousands of kilometres from each other, yet this has been the case for an extended period of time. This course will assess the local and global aspects of fashion, following the fashion supply chain and providing both historical and current perspectives on the construction of fashion. Separated into 8 different places and spaces, the course will follow the fashion supply chain from inception and physical creation to retailing, marketing, and consumption, and wearing.
  • Globalisation and the making of Europe, 1850-present
    After an introduction on trade before the industrial revolution, the relation between increased specialisation, industrialisation and the growth of economic contacts will be discussed. In the second half of the 19th century, monetary stability and free trade created a truly global economy, but not without suppressing a substantial part of the world. From 1914 on, two world wars and the cold war prevented a complete recovery of economic relations. Political interests caused that national economies were created with relatively limited international contacts. In post-1945 Europe this was a problem. Not only had the 1930s showed that economic nationalism was fatal for growth and development, but Germany also was a problem. For these reasons European economic integration seemed a solution. Until the collapse of the Soviet Empire, this proved very successful. In the 1990s liberalisation of international markets, but also, just as in the late 19th century, an enormous decline of transport costs, caused a second period of globalisation. Now multinational companies organized that production chains were cut apart and each step was done wherever in the wold that is cheapest. Europe was no longer the centre and its process of integration, that after the cold war got a boost, now is even crumbling.
  • Travelling Things: The Making of Heritage in Different Educational Contexts
    In this class, we investigate the making of heritage in both informal and formal educational settings. The focus will be on processes of heritagization of everyday material culture. Both in the academic field as in the wider heritage domain, there has been a growing interest in the culture of everyday life and ordinary things. Historians and ethnologists study the generational transmission and appropriation of repertoires of everyday material culture, and many museums develop exhibitions on everyday practices, displaying ordinary objects. Also in educational programmes for primary and secondary schools, a growing interest in the topic can be discerned. In the lectures and seminars the findings of historical and ethnological research, exhibition projects and educational programmes will be confronted with each other and discussed in a broader cultural context, with the aim of coming to a better understanding of different forms of heritage making and the role of education in processes of heritagization. A museum visit is part of this course.

Georg-August Universität Göttingen:
Pathway B “Global Markets and Development”

  • Development Economics 1 – Macro Issues
    Expose students to macroeconomic issues in economic development, including how economic growth, trade, inequality, aid, capital flows, and population issues affect economic development.
  • Development Economics 3 – Regional Perspectives
    Allow students to apply theoretical and empirical concepts in development economics to understand differences in regional economic development (East Asia, South Asia, Latin America, and Africa).
  • Globalisation and Development
    In-depth study of linkages between globalisation and economic development – opportunities, risks and challenges.
  • International Human Resource Management
    Students get insights into major topics of Human Resource Management (HRM) in an international context. The course will introduce the context international managers need to consider, e.g. cultural differences, and major HRM functions, e.g. global staffing.
  • Sustainable Development, Trade and Environment
    The seminar focuses on environmental issues in globalised context, emphasising the concept of sustainable development and the role of international trade as well as global enforcement mechanisms.
  • Selected Topics in Asian Business and Management
    The seminar will place particular focus on selected Asian countries, e.g. China, Japan, South Korea, and Indonesia. It will cover research fields related to Asian business and management issues (e.g. market entry, employee retention, expatriates, M&A).
  • Political Construction of Europe
    Introduction into the historical dimensions of the European integration process into current debates about Europe.