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XX50205: Global transformations: issues and trajectories

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2014/5
Further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences
Further information on credits Credits: 6
Further information on unit levels Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Further information on teaching periods Period: Semester 1
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Summary: CW 100%
Further information on unit assessment Assessment Detail:
  • Coursework (CW 100% - Qualifying Mark: 40)
Further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Coursework reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Further information on requisites Requisites:
Further information on descriptions Description: Aims:
To compare explore how global transformations are critically analysed from different social science perspectives with reference to specific policy areas.

Learning Outcomes:
Deepened interdisciplinary understanding of social science discourses and methods for analysing global processes of change both generally and in specified policy areas, including the role of different forms of data and analysis in globalised policy development. Deeper understanding of how global and national policy processes interact.

Discourse analysis, policy analysis.

The unit seeks to convey an overview of the problems associated with contemporary transformations of the global political economy and the policy issues and debates they engender. In so doing, it will attend to the different theoretical traditions (partly disciplinary specific) that seek to comprehend the dynamics and consequences of global change. The first three sessions and the final one will offer an integrated 'totalisation' of the subject matter, while the intervening sessions will (a) provide introductions to some of the key problem areas and (b) provide an opportunity for colleagues to 'showcase' some of the content of the optional units that will be available to participants in TB2. The intention is the offer sessions associated with all of the problem areas that options deal with, while requiring participants to choose six of them as components of this unit. The unit will be team taught by colleagues from: SPAIS, Education, EFM, Law, Geography (Bristol); and Economics, Education and Social and Policy Sciences (Bath).
Sessions 1-3
These sessions will provide an overview of the key processes that have forged the contemporary global condition. Inter alia it will flag-up matters of capital accumulation and cyclical crises, disparities of wealth and life chances, environmental problems, the shifting balance of global power etc. As far as possible it will be comparative across world-regions, show how an analytic focus on 'the global' tends to problematize the state-centric assumptions and discourses on which much social science is predicated and raise some of the related policy questions. In so doing these first sessions will provide a broad context for the substantive issues raised in the subsequent sessions. In addition, these initial sessions will emphasize that the substantive issues will be approached from a variety of theoretical (and possibly methodological) perspectives.
Sessions 4-9
These sessions will deal with some of the vectors and problem areas (or 'hot topics') associated with global transformation and will 'showcase' the options that participants could take in TB2. Examples for the foci of these sessions include: Trade; Global Finance; Global and Regional Governance; Production Networks and Industrialisation; Environmental Crises and food security
Education and skills; Migration; Human Rights; Changing Contours of Global Power; The Rising Powers and Their Consequences; Global Poverty and well-being.
Session 10
This final session will offer a conclusion to the unit by identifying some of the trajectories for change evident in vectors and problem areas discussed in the body of the unit.
Indicative reading
* David Held et al, Global Transformations (Polity Press, 1999)
* David Hulme, Global Poverty (Routledge 2010)
* Manuel Castells, The Information Age, Vols I, II, II (Blackwell, 2000-03)
* Andrew Glyn, Capitalism Unleashed (Oxford University Press, 2006)
* Nicola Phillips and Catherine Weaver, editors: International Political Economy: debating the past, present and future (Routledge, 2010)
Further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

XX50205 is a Designated Essential Unit on the following programmes:

Department of Social & Policy Sciences
  • THXX-AFM46 : MRes Global Political Economy: Transformations & Policy Analysis
  • THXX-AFM47 : MRes Global Political Economy: Transformations & Policy Analysis

* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2014/15 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2015/16 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2014/15.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.