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Interdisciplinary Concentration in International Political Economy

Program Planner

The concentration in International Political Economy (IPE) introduces students to an important and inherently interdisciplinary field of study. IPE examines the interaction between political and economic phenomena over time; its concerns are both historical and contemporary. To appreciate the various aspects of IPE, students take courses across four schools, thereby completing their breadth requirements prior to their more specialized study in their majors.

The requirements for the IPE concentration include one of three introductory courses: International Relations deals, necessarily, with both economic and political issues. Politics and Society in Developing Countries approaches its subject using the tools of many disciplines including history, literature and film. International Studies: Processes, Themes, and Issues is the introductory course for the International Studies major and uses history, literature, economics and political science to understand interaction among peoples over time. All three courses introduce students to topics central to international political economy.

Having learned to appreciate the value of many disciplines in the introductory course, students proceed to enhance their understanding of IPE by taking a history course, an analytic course, and an economics or business course. Knowledge of world history is essential to an understanding of contemporary politics and economics. The subject matter of international political economy and macroeconomics bears directly on the concerns of the concentration. Microeconomics and statistics are essential tools for public policy analysis. An option from the list of business and economics courses below will deepen student’s analytic capacity and their substantive knowledge of IPE.

Finally, students gain some understanding of the cultural context of political and economic interaction by taking two courses in art and literature from those listed below. With the completion of a lab science, students will have pursued courses across the liberal learning categories. Furthermore, they will have gained understanding of international political economy, an increasingly important concern of informed citizens.

Faculty Sponsors

Sponsors: C. Fisher (African American Studies), B. Leven (Business), M. Lowi (Political Science), J. Mi (English & World Languages and Cultures), B. Potter (Political Science), S. Wright (World Languages and Cultures)


The required courses are as follows; prerequisites appear in parentheses after the course title:

Introductory Course

One of the following (counts as Behavioral, Social, or Cultural perspectives):

  • POL 230/International Relations
  • POL 250/Politics and Society in Developing Countries
  • INT 200/International Studies: Processes, Themes, Issues

Social Change in Historical Perspectives

One of the following:

  • HIS 158/Colonial Latin America
  • HIS 321/History of the World Economy
  • HIS 334/Modern East Asia
  • HIS 335/Modern Japan
  • HIS 342/Modern Middle East
  • HIS 349/The Soviet Union, 1917-1991
  • HIS 352/Colonial and Modern Africa


One of the following (counts as Behavioral, Social, or Cultural perspectives :

  • POL 380/International Political Economy
  • ECO 102/Principles of Macroeconomics


One of the following (counts as Behavioral, Social, or Cultural perspectives:

  • ECO 101/Principles of Microeconomics
  • INB 330/Capital Flows and Currency Crisis (prerequisite: ECO 102)
  • ECO 335/Economics of Development (prerequisite: ECO 101)
  • ECO 340/International Economics (prerequisite: ECO 102)
  • MGT 310/Cross-Cultural Management

Arts and Humanities

Two of the following:

  • AAH 105/Art History I: Caves to Cathedrals
  • AAH 106/Art History II: Renaissance to Revolution
  • AAH 215/The Arts of South Asia
  • AAH 216/The Arts of East Asia
  • AAH 217/Arts of the Islamic World
  • AAH 317/Arts of Iran
  • AAH 344/Art of the Italian Renaissance
  • CLS 250/Introduction to Greek Mythology
  • CMP 370/LIT 394/Topics in Comparative Literature
  • HON 347/Paris before the Great War
  • INT 365/AAS 365/African Cinema: Francophone African Experience through Film
  • INT 410/Global Inequalities (prerequisite: one of the following:  ECO 335, POL 250, POL 380 or PHL 350 or permission of the instructor)
  • LIT 212/Cultural Representation of Gender
  • LIT 231/CMP 231/World Literature to 1700
  • LIT 232/CMP 232/World Literature since 1700
  • LIT 233/TTR 233/World Drama
  • LIT 388/Contemporary Literature
  • LIT 316/WGS 376/Global Women Writers
  • PHL 135/Contemporary Moral Issues
  • PHL 240/Political Philosophy
  • PHL 275/Philosophy of Law
  • PHL 350/Ethical Theory
  • PHL 430/Advanced Ethics
  • WGS 360/LIT 334/Literature by Latinas and Latin American Women
  • WGS 375/Transnational Feminisms

Quantitative Reasoning

One of the following (or an appropriate Statistics course by advisement)

  • STA 115/Statistics
  • STA 215/Statistical Inference

Natural Science

One lab science course

Total = 8 Courses

Please note: The Liberal Learning Program has been renamed The College Core, and some of its components have also been renamed. Learn More