Course 2012-2013 a.y.



Department of Social and Political Sciences

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31
CLEAM (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SPS/04) - CLEF (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SPS/04) - CLEACC (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SPS/04) - BESS-CLES (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SPS/04) - BIEMF (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SPS/04)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (II sem.)

Course Objectives

The Course provides models, tools and insights to understand the international context by integrating economic analysis with the major theories of International Relations (IR). The Course is organized in three parts. The first part focuses on the contribution of IR theories to the understanding of the European integration process, the functioning of the European Institutions, and the foreign policy of the European Union and its member States. The second part focuses on China’s increasingly assertive behaviour on the international scene.

Course Content Summary

SECTION ONE - Europe in the world: a declining power?

  • Understanding International Relations: complementarity of the economic and political approach
  • The European as a global actor: the Realist and Liberal views
  • Functioning, voting system, and power distribution in the EU
  • The P(I)IGS crisis: a political approach
  • The contribution of IR theories to energy security in Europe
  • The fight against climate change: the EU and the unequal international burden-sharing
  • The EU and the US: the future of the transatlantic relations

SECTION TWO China in the world: the emerging power

  • China’s development model amid growing integration into the world economy
  • The evolution of China’s foreign policy: from ideology to pragmatism
  • China’s relations with the US and the EU between interdependence and competition

SECTION THREE Pattern of democratic transition in China and Russia

  • The Chinese political system
  • The Russian political system
  • Patterns of democratic transition: a comparative perspective

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods

Written exam. There are two options. Students may take the exam in two written parts: a 1st partial exam and a 2nd partial exam which cover the first half and the second half of the course respectively. In this case, the exam is considered as passed only if both exams are graded at least 18/30. Alternatively, students may take a general exam covering the entire course material.
Students who have NOT passed the exam yet for the previous year have to prepare the current program.

For information on recognition of exchange courses please contact prof. Paolo Graziano


  • R. JACKSON, G. SORENSEN, Introduction to International Relations, Oxford University Press, 2010, fourth edition (chapters 2, 3, 4).
  • D. GUTHRIE, China and Globalization, Routledge, 2009, Revised Edition (selected chapters)
  • A selection of articles and book chapters available as Coursepack at Mastercopy before the beginning of the course.
Exam textbooks & Online Articles (check availability at the Library)
Last change 29/03/2012 16:29