Political Economy in the Global Age
The nexus between politics and economics shapes important dilemmas of our life. How income is divided, who is poor and who is rich, what gets produced, how elections are decided, how governments and policies are shaped, and the role of leadership in the economy. This course reviews these issues emphasizing theory as well as practice, in three parts. First, the main schools of Political Economy are surveyed and applied to three important processes: Globalization and the information revolution, the 1970s and 1980s liberalization in the rich countries, and the 1990s transition from Communism to market economy in Eastern Europe. In its second part, the course focuses on rationalist methods of analyzing political issues and applies them mostly to 1990s Europe. Finally, the course studies the role of political leadership in times of crisis in 1980s Israel and 1930s America.