Photo of Dr Claes Belfrage

Dr Claes Belfrage BA, ESRC MA, Ph.D., PGCAP, ILM

Reader in Global Political Economy Work, Organisation and Management


MKIB225 - International Business

International business should be understood as a broad concept that speaks to the dynamics of interaction between a wide range of actors in the world economy (e.g. Guedes and Faria, 2010). This module aims at producing the basic knowledge and skills for understanding that interaction focusing on firms, but clearly considering other types of actors such as states, international organisations, labour and social movements. It does so by asking three sets of interrelated questions. Firstly, why do businesses internationalise their operations? What, and in relation to whom, can they gain from doing so? Secondly, how do transnational corporations operate across borders? How do these operations contribute to patterns of international development? Are these patterns smooth and harmonious (simple globalisation) or uneven? Thirdly, what is the current (and future) context in which transnational enterprise takes place? The global economic and financial crisis transformed the dynamics of the world economy in a number of ways, and the module aims at enhancing knowledge of this new context of international business. The module will consider key phenomena ranging from the role of the BRIC economies in the future international economic order to the gendered dimension of the crisis and its resolution.

Global Political Economy

This module's aims are to:
1. Give students a thorough understanding of: recent trends in the global economy; the historical, economic, political, social, technological, and cultural processes of globalization; and the institutional architecture of global governance.
2. Relate theories and concepts to relevant evidence, examples, and case-studies.
3. Examine the role played by International Civil Society institutions in global governance, including the WTO, the IMF, the World Bank and the United Nations, as well as regional supranational bodies such as the EU.
4. Examine the impact of the Global Financial Crisis, the growth of the emerging economies, and issues such as international economic and financial relations, gender, migration and climate change.

Ph.D. Supervision

I am always on the lookout for supervising capable and committed Ph.D. students in the areas in which I teach and research. I am currently supervising three Ph.D. students:

Chris Woods:
Topic: "Towards a contemporary understanding of ‘Independence’ in the Music Industry"

Carl Hughes (secondary supervisor):
Topic: "Devolution and accountability in placed-based industrial strategy: addressing the regional imbalance in the drive for national growth"

Ellie Perrin (funded by the ESRC, secondary supervisor):
"The political economy of post-conflict Northern Ireland: the contribution of worker cooperatives"

I have supervised the following students to successful completion and defence of their doctoral thesis:

Harald Köpping (funded by the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung and the School of Management, University of Liverpool):
Topic: "The Spillover of Misery: A critical invesigation into the social purpose of European integration using the case study of migration management".

Felix Hauf (as external supervisor and examiner)(based at and funded by Frankfurt University, Summa Cum Laude):
Topic: "The Cultural Political Economy of Decent Work: Transnational Labour Norms between Global Regulation and Local Appropriation – the Case of Indonesia’s Garment Industry".

Christiane Chihadeh:
Topic: ‘An analysis of the relationship of British utility companies and the British government since 1986: an historical examination regarding their relationship with the aim to provide insights into the making of public policy.’

Modules for 2023-24


Module code: ULMS543

Role: Module Co-ordinator