Some of the major developments in global politics today are being discussed under the umbrella term ‘globalization.’ This module provides you with an introduction to the major transformations occurring in global economics, politics, culture, and ecology. It will introduce you to various tools assisting in the interpretation and assessment of these transformations. Starting from this theoretical basis, you will discuss real-world situations of political conflicts.
Changing Global Landscapes: Globalization Challenges
|12 Weeks à 15hrs|
|Flexible Starting Date - Details on Request|
|On-site Workshop in October each year|
|Credits: 8 ECTS|
|Supervision by Dedicated Instructor|
|State of the Art LMS Canvas|
- You will be familiarized with theoretical approaches to globalization process and the occurring consequences all over the world.
- You will get the opportunity to link your theoretical knowledge to practical tasks concerning real-world situations and to discuss your point of view with other participants.
- You will be provided with practical skills concerning active participating in controversial discussions, presenting and supporting your own arguments, treating complex theoretical and practical questions and developing your own hypothesis.
- Writing a Policy briefing paper for a finance minister or an op-ed piece and a research proposal in order to prepare your final assessment.
- Preparing the final research paper about a particular conflict, based on your previous work. For the final grade only the final paper counts.
Part 01: Introduction to Globalization
This unit explores the conceptual framework of globalization by focusing on matters of definition and discussing the main agreements/disagreements among globalization scholars over the last two decades. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Understand the main definitions, concepts, and issues raised in the ongoing academic debates on globalization
- Distinguish between several influential academic perspectives on the subject
- Identify and elaborate on some recent points of convergence among globalization scholars
- Appreciate the significance of the newly emerging transdisciplinary field of ‘global studies’
- What are some of the main definitions of globalization?
- How does ‘globalization’ differ from related concepts such as ‘globality,’ ‘globalism,’ and ‘global imaginary?’
- What are the major dimensions, characteristics, and dynamics of globalization?
- What are the major perspectives expressed by the main participants in the academic debate on globalization?
- On which significant issues has there been recent agreement among globalization scholars?
In addition to introducing students to important historical perspectives on globalization, this unit discusses various phases of globalization, from prehistoric times to the contemporary period. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Acquire a basic overview of the history of globalization
- Develop sound knowledge of major perspectives and historiographies articulated by influential scholars of global history
- Appreciate the crucial role of historical approaches to the study of globalization
- Comprehend the significance of transnational connections and networks that developed over long periods of time
- Is globalization an old or a new phenomenon?
- What is global history?
- What are the major phases of globalization?
- What are the main theoretical perspectives articulated by historians of globalization?
- What is the contribution of ‘grand historical narratives’ to the study of globalization?
This unit explores the significant changes to global economic arrangements as part of globalization. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Gain a comprehensive understanding of the historical developments leading to current global economic arrangements.
- Develop sound knowledge of neoliberalism and its associated trends in world economics.
- Appreciate new forms of global economic interactions through trade and finance and the impacts of these on individuals, corporations and states.
- Comprehend the significance of transnational corporations in global economics.
- Perceive the increased importance of international economic institutions.
- What have been the most significant changes in global economics in the post-World War Two era?
- How have these changes affected and been affected by changes in global politics?
- How do the developments in global economics demonstrate the increasing influence of processes of globalization?
- What are the potential and actual impacts of changing financial patterns on politics, culture and the environment, especially in the global South?
- What does the recent global financial crisis reveal about the economic dimensions of globalization?
Part 02: Dimensions of Globalization
The aim of this unit is to introduce students to the political changes and challenges to the modern nation-state and the international states-system posed by globalization. By the end of this unit students should have
- A comprehensive knowledge of the history and characteristics of the modern nation-state and states-system, in particular of sovereignty and its changing nature.
- A good grasp of the main academic debates about political globalization.
- Knowledge of changes occurring in structures and processes at a global level, such as the emergence of global governance structures, inter-governmental organizations, and the impact of global ethics regimes such as human rights discourse in the context of a fledgling global civil society.
- An understanding of the sources of power in world politics, and how these are shifting as a result of globalization.
- How do ‘state,’ ‘nation,’ and ‘sovereignty’ interact to shape the current structure and process of national and international politics?
- How are various globalization dynamics—massive flows of capital, people, and technology across borders—altering the structure and powers of the modern nation-state and affecting the principle of sovereignty?
- What are the primary causes and driving forces of political globalization?
- Do the changes to the modern nation-state and the international states-system brought on by globalization signal the emergence of new global governance structures?
This unit will introduce students to the cultural aspects of globalization, how various aspects of culture shape and are shaped by the processes of globalization. By the end of this unit students will:
- Have a critical understanding of the ‘globalization or American/Westernization’ debate
- Appreciate the importance of media in shaping processes of globalization and cultural exchange
- Be familiar with academic debates around the impact of globalization on the world’s languages
- Develop a critical engagement with religion and how it influences and is influenced by processes of globalization
- Is a global culture emerging? If so, what are the principal features of this global culture? What impact might these have on political, cultural and economic relationships in world politics? What is the relationship between global and local cultures?
- What is the role and significance of the media in cultural globalization?
- How are the diversity and spread of languages being affected by globalization?
- What is the relationship between globalization and religion?
The aim of this unit is to introduce students to the close connections between processes of globalization and ecological impacts that are becoming increasingly more urgent in world politics. By the conclusion of this unit students will:
- Appreciate how processes of globalization contribute to major global ecological problems.
- Have an understanding of the major ecological challenges facing the world in the 21st century.
- Perceive the severe economic and political damages that these ecological problems could inflict, particularly on developing countries.
- Have gained general knowledge about current global initiatives to address identified ecological problems and prevent any further damage.
- What are the principal ecological challenges facing the global community?
- How have economic, political, and cultural dimensions of globalization affected the ecological dimensions?
- In what ways do the ecological impacts of globalization particularly affect developing countries?
- What are the benefits and disadvantages of the global initiatives currently in place to address problems associated with the ecological dimensions of globalization?
Part 03: Global Ideologies, Social Movements, and American Empire
As the first installment of Part III of this module, this unit turns to the ideological dimension of globalization by exploring the dominant political belief system of our time: market globalism. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Gain a basic understanding of the elements and functions of political ideologies with regard to the current globalization dynamics
- Grasp the connection between market globalism and neoliberal ideas and policies
- Identify the main social groups behind market globalism
- Identify and critically analyze the five core ideological claims of market globalism
- Understand the basic principles of critical discourse analysis
- What are the basic functions of political ideologies?
- What are the five core ideological claims of market globalism?
- Which groups in society are the key ideological codifiers of market globalism?
- What is the connection between market globalism and neoliberalism?
- What is critical discourse analysis and how can this methodology be employed to interpret globalist ideologies?
Unit 8 outlines the key features of one of the main ideological challengers to dominant market globalism that has emerged in world politics in recent times. Frequently misunderstood, mislabeled, ignored or downplayed in International Relations and International Political Economy, justice globalism is an important ideology that is shaping and influencing 21st century world politics. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Be able to identify and understand the main theoretical and ideological underpinnings of justice globalism
- Understand and address critiques of justice globalism by market globalists and draw their own conclusions regarding the practical policy implications of justice globalism
- Have a comprehensive understanding of the history of the global justice movement
- Identify key actors, both individuals and groups, in the global justice movement
- Continue to improve their understanding of ideology and discourse analysis
- What are the main theoretical influences on the global justice movement?
- How and when did the global justice movement emerge?
- Who are the main actors in the global justice movement?
- How does the global justice movement conceptualize the process of globalization? How does this differ from the conceptions of market globalists?
- What are the main critiques that market globalists make concerning the global justice movement?
- What are the main policy goals of the global justice movement?
In Unit 9, we will examine the rise of fundamentalist globalisms as ideological contestors against market globalism. We focus in particular on the rise of jihadist globalism, an Islamic version of these fundamentalist globalisms that are frequently influenced by religion, although briefly highlight others as well. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Have an understanding of the historical emergence of fundamentalist globalisms, particularly jihadist globalism
- Identify key actors associated with jihadist globalism
- Be able to outline and analyze the core ideological claims of jihadist globalism
- Understand the importance of religious language and imagery in the construction of the jihadist globalism understanding of globalization and world politics and how this language shapes their actions
- Identify key areas where jihadist and other fundamentalist globalisms clash with market globalism
- Have a comprehensive understanding of the impact of jihadist globalism on world politics
- How and when did jihadist globalism emerge?
- Who are the main actors in jihadist globalism?
- How do jihadist globalists interpret or represent globalization?
- What are the core ideological claims of jihadist globalism?
- What is the significance of religion, religious language, and imagery in the statements and actions of jihadist globalists?
- What is the impact of jihadist globalism on world politics?
This unit examines the influential anti-globalization arguments of national-populist movements on the political Right*. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Identify some of the major national-populist parties and movements in the global North
- Understand the styles of rhetoric utilized by these groups
- Appreciate the significance of their views in the public debate over globalization
- Comprehend the basic claims of economic nationalism
- Familiarize themselves with the main arguments of national-populists in opposition to economic globalization and immigration
- Critically evaluate their anti-globalization arguments and claims using the method of critical discourse analysis
*Students are reminded that the understanding of politics as existing across a ‘left–right’ spectrum dates back from the French Revolution. The political ‘Right’ indicates a more traditional, nationally focused, conservative political agenda that seeks to maintain the status quo within society as well as maximize benefits to the nation in global politics, with little regard of the implications of such policies for other states within the global community.
- What are some of the major political parties, movements, and individuals that espouse national-populist views in opposition to globalization?
- What types of rhetorical maneuvers do national-populists engage in?
- What are the principal claims of economic nationalism?
- Why are national-populists opposed to globalization and immigration?
- Why is national-populism not a comprehensive political ideology on a par with market globalism, justice globalism, and jihadist globalism?
This unit explores the significance of the United States’ claim to be the world’s ‘hyperpower’ and its possible decline over the past several years. It discusses the relationship between globalization processes and the emergence of the discourse about ‘American Empire’ by focusing on the ideological shift from market globalism to imperial globalism in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Gain a basic understanding of traditional theories of imperialism and their relevance in the debate on ‘American Empire’ that evolved after the 9/11 attacks
- Develop knowledge of American public diplomacy initiatives to improve its public image in the face of the widely-perceived unilateralism of the Bush administration and affiliated neoconservative policy centers and think tanks
- Understand how the economistic language of market globalism was adapted to accommodate the rather militaristic discourse of imperial globalism
- Comprehend the difference between ‘soft power’ and ‘hard power’ strategies.
- Evaluate important political and cultural dynamics linking globalization and the ‘War on Terror’
- Discuss the role of the United States after the financial crisis and in the context of the Trump administration in global affairs
- What are some of the most influential theories of imperialism and how do they relate to globalization and the discourse of American Empire?
- What are some of the basic arguments in the debate on American Empire?
- What were the central features of US public diplomacy efforts after September 11?
- How has the ideological structure of market globalism changed in the wake of September 11?
- What is the difference between hard power and soft power?
- How is US foreign policy and public diplomacy changing after the Trump administration took office?
This unit explores the future of globalization by presenting three possible future scenarios. By the end of this unit, students will:
- Understand and critically evaluate three possible future scenarios
- Develop an argument based on research and analysis as to which of these scenarios is most feasible and/or desirable
- Learn to think seriously about sustainable alternatives to existing practices and patterns of globalization
- Recognize that although globalization remains the most powerful dynamic of our time, it is not inevitably moving towards a predetermined endpoint
- Appreciate the significance of the rising global imaginary
- How might current globalization dynamics shape future social formations?
- What are the three most likely trajectories of globalization? What other trajectories might there be?
- Will globalization lead to more extensive forms of human cooperation and interdependence, or will it generate forces that will bring about its demise?
- What is a ‘global ethic?’ Is it important to develop one and why or why not?
- How does the rising global imaginary affect the future of globalization?