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Political Economy (POEC) 393

Canada and the Global Political Economy (Revision 2)

POEC 393 course cover

Revision 2 closed, replaced by current version.

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Delivery Mode:Individualized study.


Area of Study:Social Science


Centre:Centre for Global and Social Analysis

POEC 393 has a Challenge for Credit option.

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Countries everywhere are looking for ways to compete and increase their global share of exports. One of the most common 'buzzwords' in the contemporary Canadian political lexicon is 'global competitiveness.' But what is meant when people say that Canada must be more competitive? Are there different ways to compete? What should the role of governments be in the quest for global competitiveness? Is free trade the best way to increase our share?

POEC 393, written by leading Canadian political economist Professor Daniel Drache, and revised by Gunhild Hoogensen, is designed to give students the analytical tools they need to consider such questions. The course examines the rise of globalization and the institutional arrangements it has initiated in a worldwide and North American context.

POEC 393 discusses a number of debates about the best ways to 'compete,' many of which rely on the 'market' or co-operative and state-aided industrial strategies. Students learn to analyze these broad issues and formulate policy-related initiatives for Canadian cases.


The course consists of the following four units.

Unit 1: Globalization and Competitiveness: State Policy and Market Power

Unit 2: To Trade or Not to Trade?

Unit 3: Is a Zero-tariff Trade Policy a Viable Goal for Canada?

Unit 4: Competing Globally: Getting the Most from Markets


To receive credit for POEC 393, you must complete all the assignments, receive a minimum mark of 50 per cent on the final examination, and obtain a course composite grade of at least "D" (50 per cent). The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Tutor-marked Exercises (15% each) Take-Home Final Examination Total
60% 40% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Clement, Wallace, ed. 1997. Understanding Canada: Building on the New Canadian Political Economy. Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen's University Press.

D'Aquino, Thomas Paul, and David Stewart-Patterson. 2001. Northern Edge: How Canadians Can Triumph in the Global Economy. Toronto: Stoddart.

Dunkley, Graham. 2000. The Free Trade Adventure: The WTO, the Uruguay Round and Globalism—A Critique. London: Zed Books.

Other Materials

The course materials include a study guide, a student manual, and a reading file.

Three-year BA concentration in Political Economy

Four-year BA major in Political Economy

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 2, June 25, 2004.

View previous syllabus

Last updated by SAS  07/08/2015 09:38:40