The Global Political Economy MA will help you broaden your understanding of the complex contemporary global economic system and its socio-political relationships. The course is designed for inquisitive students that want to develop a cutting-edge perspective on global economic and financial relations, inter-state competition, mechanisms of global governance and processes of transformation and change.
You don’t need any formal economics education for this course. Students come from a wide range of subject fields, including Politics, Law, Business Studies, Media Studies, the Humanities and more.
From global inequality and tax evasion to financial regulation and financial crises, the expertise that you develop on this advanced MA will enable you to pursue a wide range of rewarding career options in the public and private sectors.
The Global Political Economy MA will help you:
You will benefit from our internationally renowned expertise in the field of global political economy, exemplified by:
The MA in Global Political Economy is taught by internationally renowned, world-leading scholars in the field, including the next-generation of academics engaged in cutting-edge research. As a result, City boasts one of the UK’s best teams in the critical study of global finance.
Our staff includes Ronen Palan, Anastasia Nesvetailova, Stefano Pagliari, Amin Samman and Sandy Brian Hager amongst others.
In many modules, you will be encouraged to give presentations. We use group discussions, brain-storming, role-play and mini-roundtables on thematic issues in addition to conventional teaching techniques.
As an MA student, you are also invited to attend PhD workshops organised by doctoral students in the Department.
All modules are assessed through a written essay of 4,500 words.
In addition to coursework, you must complete a final MA dissertation of 15,000 words based on your independent research. The dissertation is worth one-third of the overall MA mark. The Global Political Economy MA dissertation is grounded in a specialised stream of the Research Design module (IPM111). During the module, you will receive specialised training in research methodology, tailored for your dissertation in the field of global political economy.
You will complete 180 credits in total.
The course consists of core modules on the history of global capitalism and contending approaches from across the political economy traditions. You will then develop specialist knowledge through elective modules, which cover issues such as economic and financial crises, international organisations and economic diplomacy, poverty and inequality, regionalisation and globalisation, states and sovereignty, and the rise of new economic powers.
You will take two core modules and a range of electives. Core modules are typically taught as a weekly one-hour lecture and one-hour tutorial, and optional modules as a weekly two-hour seminar session.
Teaching is supported by a personal tutorial and supervision system, as well as organised seminar series with outside speakers, both professional and academic.
You choose 60 credits from:
Typical modules offered by the Department of International Politics:
Typical modules offered by The City Law School:
In Term 3 you will complete your dissertation project.
This specialised MA degree will provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to enter a range of careers related to the global political economy. It enables graduates both with and without prior knowledge of economics to engage competently and confidently with economic and financial developments and pursue professional careers in the public and private sectors, including:
Should you want to take your academic studies further, the MA also provides you with a solid foundation to pursue doctoral research in politics and political economy.
During your MA year you are encouraged to attend the Department's International Politics Careers Day which explores career opportunities and provides:
This MA programme provides you with a thorough grounding in the classics of Social and Political Thought and a deep and varied engagement with their 20th and 21st Century offshoots. This course addresses a range of key concepts and ideas that are central to the analysis of contemporary society, politics and culture, including debates over the basis of contemporary capitalism, neoliberalism, biopolitics, ideology, and the fundamental question of what it means to be ‘social’ and/or ‘human’.
The degree is structured around two core modules. The first of these is State, Capitalism and Market (convened by Professor Nicholas Gane), which uses theoretical resources such as Michel Foucault’s writings on biopolitics to think analytically and critically about capitalism and its recurrent crises. This module looks in particular at the recent financial crisis and the role this crisis has played in the reconfiguration of structural relations between the market and the state. A key part of this module is the critical analysis of political-economic discourses of neoliberalism that argue for the sovereignty of markets and economics over all things ‘social’. The second core module is Politics and Social Theory (convened by Dr Charles Turner) uses the work a wide-range of classical thinkers (for example, de Tocqueville, Marx, Durkheim and Weber) and Twentieth Century writers (Arendt, Schmitt and Rorty) to consider the possibility of developing a sociological understanding of politics.
Beyond these two core modules, you can pursue your own research interests and specialisms by choosing four modules from a wide range of options, and then progressing to research and write their own 15,000 word dissertation.
The MA in Sociology addresses recent key concerns and enduring intellectual traditions within sociology and related social sciences. The degree addresses issues such as inequality, racism, violence, capitalism and social change among many important themes with particular contemporary relevance. Critical debate and modes of embedding critical thought in reflective practice mark core skills you will develop in this course. The core modules ground you in theory, methods and analytical tools, and options allow you to apply them to particular issues. For the dissertation you will conduct independent study with a supervisor, choosing from a range of topics similar in scope to the options offered.
You will study a range of modules as part of your course, some examples of which are listed below.
◾Research Projects in Practice: From Design to Dissemination
◾Contemporary Debates in Sociology
◾Debates in Gender Research
◾Gender, Sex and Bodies
◾Gender and Violence
◾Feminist Media and Cultural Studies
◾Environment and Culture
◾Methods in Science and Technology Studies
◾Mobilities, Society & Change
◾The Social Life of Science and Technology: Theories and Debates
◾Capitalism and Crisis
◾Social and Cultural Theory
◾Critical Methods in Media and Cultural Studies
◾Critical Debates in Media and Cultural Studies
Designed for students interested in new ways of exploring and understanding the social world through the use of visual, sensory and other experimental approaches, this programme allows you to study sociological issues alongside innovative methods.
The MA will enable you to examine, represent and intervene in the social world. You will develop the ability to undertake empirical research and present it publicly in a variety of media and materials. You will engage with sociology as an inventive research practice, deploying creative research methods to address classic and changing sociological problems.
The MA in Visual Sociology provides an introduction to the range of debates in visual research, encouraging you to build on these by using visual, sensory and inventive methodological practices to carry out critical social research in your areas of interest, whether this is science and technology, contemporary capitalism, gender and sexual cultures, race, human rights, globalisation, or other aspects of social life.
The programme combines lectures and seminars with practical sessions and workshop-based projects in which you develop a hands-on approach to sociological research, providing a skills base in methods which could be used in public sector contexts, art/media research, design or commercial application.
As well as presenting your ideas through writing, during the MA you will have the opportunity to produce different outputs, including film/video, photography, sound and multi-media pieces. You will also organise and curate some of this work in an exhibition. Critical feedback sessions function as a testing ground for individual projects, and themed projects allow you to further develop a portfolio of research outputs geared to a variety of audiences.
Throughout the programme is a concern with the research process, and you will have the opportunity to design and reflect on your own research projects. The dissertation allows you to undertake a substantive research project on your individual interests, supporting by one-to-one supervision with a member of staff. You will have access to the Visual Media Lab, which offers post-production and editing stations, as well as equipment for photography and video. Students can also borrow equipment from the Media Equipment Centre.
The MA is based in the Department of Sociology, home of the The Methods Lab and at the forefront of research using live methods. It is taught by staff with a wide range of experience in both sociology and interdisciplinary research, including visual and experimental approaches. The course is suitable for applicants from a wide variety of backgrounds, including art, design, anthropology, media and communications, cultural studies, geography, and sociology.
In the first part of the course you will take ‘Empirical Social Research’, a module that takes you through the empirical research cycle in the context of the transformation of sociology in the age of visual, digital and other empirical methods. The module Theories and Debates in Visual Research' enables you to address debates within visual sociology, and also encompasses more recent issues surrounding the notions of media, interdisciplinarity and translation which become significant if sociology works with visual and other sensory materials. Assessment of these modules is by essay.
Alongside these modules you will take a core practical component, ‘Visual and Inventive Practice A’, that offers the opportunity to gain skills in photography, sound and video and to develop materials that engage a sociological imagination. A central focus is on how to translate a research question into a variety of materials or media and to be able to critically discuss the selection and use of these.
In the second term you continue with a practical module in inventive sociology, ‘Social Research for Public Engagement’, in which you will work individually or in groups to respond to a theme to create a visual, sensory or experimental object or media to be exhibited to a particular public. Assessment of the practical work includes a diary of research process alongside documentation of work.
These core modules are taught in Sociology. In the second term you will also take an option that may be chosen from Sociology or may be taken from departments across Goldsmiths including the Departments of Anthropology, English and Comparative Literature, Politics and International Relations, Media and Communications, Educational Studies, Music, and the Centre for Cultural Studies.
In the summer term you will complete a dissertation involving a major practical project consisting of any media and addressing a specific sociological problem. You will meet for individual supervision with a member of the Sociology staff. The dissertation is a substantive piece of research in which you develop a visual, inventive or experimental approach to a topic of your choice.
If you follow the MA part-time over two years, you will take ‘Empirical Social Research’, ‘Visual and Inventive Practice’ and ‘Social Research for Public Engagement’ in year 1, and ‘Theories and Debates in Visual Research’, the dissertation and an option in year 2.
You will chose an option module to the value of 30 credits from Sociology or from departments across the College including the Departments of Anthropology, English and Comparative Literature, Politics, Media and Communications, Music, Educational Studies, and the Centre for Cultural Studies.
Modules in Sociology address themes such as:
Assessment consists of coursework, extended essays, reports, presentations, practice based projects or essays/logs, group projects, reflective essays, and seen and unseen written examinations.
This programme attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds, including art and design, business, and the third sector, as well as those with social science degrees. This means the careers that they are interested in pursuing are wide and varied.
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
Conceived in the context of world-systemic transformation, this MA will give you the analytical tools to understand contemporary developments and world(s) through an encounter with post-colonial theory and international political economic issues.
We're witnessing today a tectonic shift in global geopolitics. The emergence of China, Brazil and India as global players, the development of global governance, the financial crisis, climate change – are all symptoms.
On this Masters you’ll grasp concepts like race, diaspora, hybridity, difference, grassroots development, HDI, multitude, immanence, and human rights.
These concepts are used to analyse practical, policy and activist issues arising from globalisation: global civil society, the role of international organisations (the IMF, WTO, UN and World Bank and global NGOs), intellectual property rights, social capital, financialisation, global governance and deep democracy.
You'll deal with issues like terrorism, microfinance, indigenous people, gender and sexuality, multiculturalism and environmental justice.
The MA is ideal for anyone pursuing careers in policy research, NGOs, advocacy, charities, international organisations, cultural and political activism, global media, art and curating, as well as for further academic work leading to a PhD.
The Masters includes a supervised and assessed practical placement. This may be with NGOs in India or Africa, arts and conservation organisations in China, indigenous activists in Latin America, London-based global NGOs, diasporic communities, think-tanks, environmental organisations, publishers or financial/microfinance organisations.
You'll be taught by leading theorists and visiting lecturers drawn from a wide circle of activists, artists, film-makers, lawyers, economists, journalists and policy-makers.
Recommended option modules
You take option modules to the value of 30 credits. Modules can be chosen from across Goldsmiths departments and centres. Option modules are subject to availability and approval by the module lecturer/convenor.
We offer a wide range of option modules each year. Below are some examples of modules that are currently running. For a full list, please contact the Department of Media and Communications.
Other option modules, by department
You may prefer to look through the full range of optional modules available across Goldsmiths departments.
Please note that not all the modules listed below may be open to you - your final selection will depend upon spaces available and timetable compatibility.
Essays and/or practical projects; dissertation.
The programme provides advanced training for labour market-relevant skills in transnational analysis of sovereignty, democracy, governmentality, financialisation, intellectual property rights, and the role of non-governmental organisations.
Suitable careers and areas of work for graduates of the programme include:
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.