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INT4020 - Civilising global politics

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Undergraduate Faculty of Arts

Leader(s): Professor James Walter


Clayton Second semester 2009 (Day)
South Africa Second semester 2009 (Day)


Conventionally, state-based political institutions have been designed to mediate between interests and to 'civilise' conflict. As globalisation raises doubts about the ability of state agencies to answer popular demands, are new institutional resources to respond to peoples' expectations and to manage competition developing? This unit uses case-studies to assess emerging arguments about global civil society and global citizenship in the context of the interactions between multinational corporations, international agencies and transnational non-government organisations as they seek to negotiate the terms on which people might live together in a civilised global order.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Understand the dynamics of political institutions and the arguments about how such institutions might function in a global political context.
  2. Analyse contemporary theoretical debates about global civil society, and their relation to emerging global actors (multinational corporations, international agencies and NGOs).
  3. Distinguish between theoretical interpretation, secondary source review and primary source analysis.
  4. Demonstrate practical research and project management skills.
  5. Develop advanced skills in oral and written communication and relate these to group participation and leadership. 6. Relate both knowledge and practical skills to potential careers in international institutions.


Research proposal (1000 words): 10%; Written exercise - based on seminar presentation (1000 words): 10%; Essay (5000 words): 50%; Exam (2000 words): 30%.

Contact hours

One 2-hour seminar per week.


Distinction average in level 3 units.



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