CANCELLED - COURSE: Multipolar Trading Disorder

Course content

Trade politics have erupted. The support for free-trade appears dwindling. Across the Atlantic, trade and investment issues have suddenly become a politically contested by left and right, and rejected by a growing number of voters. This is in contrast to dynamics in the global economy. An unprecedented wave of negotiations on comprehensive ‘trade and’ agreements, of which the Atlantic TTIP agreement and the Pacific TPP agreement are best known, have been launched. Global value chains, transnational production and regulatory competition have fueled corporate demands for new rules and institutions in global trade. These are potential systemic changes that could signal global destabilization of the economy. The course asks whether TPP, TTIP, CETA and other mega-FTAs represent a disorderly replacement of the postwar liberal order. If so, in what direction are  the world economy and the trading system heading, and what are the implications for Europe? The course focuses primarily on the international political economy (IPE) theories and research on the ongoing discussion of whether TPP, CETA, TTIP and other agreements are supplanting, disintegrating or reproducing the existing order. It will introduce the basic setup of EU and US trade politics, amongst others, the legal and institutional characteristics of the WTO order, and new economic theories on global trade, investment and production.

The 12-week course runs for the entire spring semester. The first weeks will start by examining and comparing new trends in global trade, with emphasis on the rise of mega-trade agreements. It will then proceed to present relevant theory and analysis of the debate; reformists, transformationalists, realists and critics. Then follows an in-depth study of key trading powers; the US, EU, China (and India to some extent). A basic introduction the WTO law and institution follows. The bulk of the course will examine key thematic aspects of the proposed FTAs, with emphasis on EU trade agreements. After concluding this part of the course, project supervision will be offered, and a paper workshop will be organized towards end of term. The course is completed by written, graded paper. 


Elective course in the Specialization "International Political Economy"

Bachelorlevel: 10 ECTS

Masterlevel: 7,5 ECTS

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Written examination
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment
  • Grade 12 is given for an outstanding performance: the student lives up to the course's goal description in an independent and convincing manner with no or few and minor shortcomings
  • Grade 7 is given for a good performance: the student is confidently able to live up to the goal description, albeit with several shortcomings
  • Grade 02 is given for an adequate performance: the minimum acceptable performance in which the student is only able to live up to the goal description in an insecure and incomplete manner

Single subject courses (day)

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 28
  • English
  • 28