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European Political Economy (Module)

Module description

The module is meant to provide for a theoretical overview of the process of European Integration, particularly European economic policy making. The theoretical background in which the course is set is represented by the traditional political scientists’ definition of political economy, mainly deriving from the tradition of International Relations and related theories of European integration. European integration and policies will be therefore assessed in the light of the different interpretative and heuristic tools provided by the theories analysed with a special attention towards the explanation of change in the adoption of policy from the competing theoretical perspectives focusing on institutions, economic interests and ideological paradigms. The policies considered range from competition policy, to EMU and to unemployment to social and migratory policies.

Core texts 

  • Magnus Ryner and Alan Cafruny, The European Union and Global Capitalism: Origins, Development, Crisis (Palgrave Macmillan European Union Series, 2017)
  • Rosamond, B., (2000) Theories of European Integration, Palgrave
  • Artis, M. and Nixson, F., (2007), The Economics of the European Union: Policy and Analysis, Fourth Edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Talani, L.S. (ed) (2009), The future of EMU, Palgrave
  • Talani, L., (2014), European Political Economy: London: Ashgate/Routledge
  • Talani, L.S. and Della Posta, P., (eds) (2011), Europe and the financial crisis, London: Palgrave, 

*Please note that module information is indicative and may change from year to year.

Staff information

Professor Magnus Ryner (Semester 1) and Professor Leila Simona Talani  (Semester 2)

Teaching pattern

Two hours per week

Indicative teaching schedule 

Part One: The Theoretical Context

  1. What is European political economy 
  2. Mainstream approaches to EPE: neo-functionalism and intergovernmentalism
  3. Neo-constructivist, compromise and eclectic approaches to EPE
  4. Neo-Gramscian and neo-Marxist approaches
  5. Application of Theories to the European Political Economy
  6. The process of European monetary integration: From Bretton Woods to the EMS
  7. The making of EMU: history and institutions
  8. The making of EMU: explanations
  9. The political Economy of fiscal co-ordination in the EU
  10. The monetary policy of the ECB from the establishment to the sovereign debt crisis
  11. The political economy of European unemployment


  1. The making of EMU: history and institutions
  2. Explaining EMU: mainstream vs critical explanations
  3. The monetary policy of the ECB from the establishment to the sovereign debt crisis
  4. The political Economy of fiscal co-ordination in the EU: before and after the euro-zone crisis
  5. The political economy of European unemployment
  6.  Theories of migration and the paradox of the Fortress Europe
  7. Irregular migration to the EU: routes, pull factors and the reaction of the EU
  8. The crisis of the Euro-zone and the reaction of the European Institutions
  9. Brexit and the City of London
  10. Revision


Module assessment - more information

Two oral presentations (10%), two 3000 word essays (each worth 45% submitted January and March)

Key information

Module code 6AAOB310

Credit level 6

Assessment coursework presentation/s

Credit value 30

Semester Full-year

Study abroad module Yes