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Professor Ethan B. Kapstein

International Political Analysis

May/June 2005

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Course Objectives: This course has three main objectives. First, it seeks to provide future business leaders with a set of conceptual tools for understanding international economic and political relations. We will consider some of the major theories of international relations and apply them to an array of important case studies. Second, it attempts to give students a sense of the trade-offs and dilemmas that policy-makers and private sector actors face as they craft strategies for dealing with their international problems. Third, it aims to make students more sophisticated observers of daily press reports about international events, and to place these particular events into a broader context. The result should be business leaders who better understand the political environment in which their commercial decisions take place.

Examinations and Assignments: The requirements for this course are active and informed class participation (25%) and a final exam (75%). Students are expected to attend every session and to be fully prepared for class discussions. In addition to the required readings, each student should follow current events in the areas that we will cover by regular reviews of leading newspapers and/or their web sites, with the following as examples:
International Herald Tribune, www.iht.com
Financial Times, www.ft.com
The Economist, www.economist.com
The major international organizations also have excellent web sites with which you should become familiar:
International Monetary Fund, www.imf.org
World Bank, www.worldbank.org
World Trade Organization, www.wto.org
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, www.oecd.org
United Nations, www.un.org
European Union, www.europa.eu.int

18 May: Global Risks Exercise
World Economic Forum, “Global Risks to the Global Economic Outlook.”

23 May: Business, Government, and Public Policy
Krueger (1990), “Government Failures in Development.”

25 May: The International Trade Regime
Milner, “International Political Economy: Beyond Hegemonic Stability.”
Hoekman and Kostecki, “Overview of the Trading System.”
European Union, “The Doha Development Agenda.”

30 May: The Financial Regime
Kapur, “The IMF: A Cure or a Curse?”
Kapstein, “Global Rules for Global Finance.”

1 June: Regional Integration and the European Union
Mattli (1999), "Explaining regional integration outcomes”;
Economist (2004), “Family Frictions.”

6 June: The State of Transatlantic Relations.
Guest Lecture: Jamie Shea, NATO
Mearsheimer, Why We’ll Soon Miss the Cold War.
Kagan, Power and Weakness.

8 June: The Politics of Terrorism.
Pape (2003), “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism”

13 June: Economic Development
EBRD, Transition Report 1999
Stiglitz and Squire, International Development, Is It Possible?
Siegle, et.al., Why Democracies Excel.

15 June: Putin’s Russia
Guest Lecture by Thomas Gomart, Institut Francaise des Relations Internationales
Readings TBD.

20 June: Guest Lecture TBD

22 June: Assessing Chinese Power
Nye, China’s Re-emergence and the Future of the Asia Pacific
Council on Foreign Relations, Executive Summary: Chinese Military Power
IISS, China’s Constrained Ambitions

27 June: Conclusions/Wrap-Up

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