PPPE6301 – Political-Economic Theories
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Syllabus)
Can long-dead Adam Smith help us explain sex-trafficking of Thai women to Japan? What insights does Karl Marx provide for explaining the Financial Crisis of 2008? What can Schumpeter teach us about today’s monopolies in the Mexican Telecom Industry? This seminar provides a grand overview of the “big thinkers” in political economy— from Malthus and Ricardo, to Keynes, Freeman and Lucas Jr. as well as Olson, Gerschenkron, and Polanyi, and many more. In addition to introducing these “old” theories, their relevance to current times are explored using case studies of real world scenarios.

PPPE6368 – Political Economy of Finance
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Syllabus)
Why are some currencies the target of speculative attacks while others remain unharmed? Why was Malaysia able to deal with the East Asian financial crisis, while Korea and Thailand were not? Why did Argentina default on its debt while Brazil did not, even though it had the higher debt burden? This course provides answers to these questions by analyzing the interplay between politics and finance. The first section of the course deals with the differences in corporate governance: the configuration of the domestic financial sector differs across countries, with implications for the way stock markets and banks are operating. The second section analyzes how politics affects exchange rates and capital mobility. The third and final section of the course investigates sovereign debt and lending. This course aims to provide students with the ability to analyze a two-way relationship: how politics affects finance as well as how finance shapes politics.

PPPE6370 – Political Economy of Natural Resources
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Syllabus)
Does oil undermine democracy? Why do natural resources have a positive effect on growth in Botswana but a negative impact in Nigeria? Is there a relationship between natural resources and (civil) war? This course explores the politics of natural resources in both industrialized and developing countries. We analyze the effect of natural resources on a variety of economic and political issues, including growth, macroeconomic stability, corruption, civil war, women’s rights, and democracy. During this process, we also focus on how political institutions and economic conditions shape the effect of natural resources. This allows us to understand why natural resources may have positive effects in some instances, but a negative in others.