Revised by: Head of Department of Economic History, 2021-03-05
This course deals with historical perspectives on the development of capitalism - today's dominant system in the world economy - with perspectives from the late Middle Ages to the present day. The historical dynamics between capital, production, environmental impact and institutions are explored over time, as well as the role of the state and firms. Furthermore, factors behind economic growth, globalization and sustainability are identified and analyzed, focusing on the basic mechanisms and consequences of capitalist development. The course explores questions about the significance of capitalism for the emergence of modern economic growth, its spread and the existence of different varieties of capitalist systems, including periods of globalization. The link between economic growth, institutional change and environmental consequences also raises questions about whether capitalism has been and can be sustainable in the long run. The course is divided into four broader themes: 1) The emergence of modern growth; 2) The Political Economy of Capitalism; 3) Capitalism and sustainability; 4) In-depth individual assignment.
Expected learning outcomes
After completing the course, the students have achieved:
In-depth knowledge and understanding: 1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the factors behind modern economic growth and the rise of capitalism. 2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the consequences of modern growth with regard to sustainability. 3. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the explanations behind various capitalist systems in the global economy.
In-depth skill and ability: 4. The student must demonstrate the ability to apply theoretical and empirical knowledge to critically analyze long-term economic change and growth processes, including institutional change, globalization and sustainable development.
Evaluation ability and approach: 5. Be able to critically and independently identify, assess and use different explanatory models and empirical data to investigate an economic-historical problem within the framework of the course themes.
Univ: To be admitted you must have accomplished 90-ECTS credits in either Economic History, Economics, Business Administration, Political Science or an equivalent Social Science topic, including a bachelor thesis equivalent to 15 ECTS credits.
Proficiency in English equivalent to Swedish upper Secondary course English A. Where the language of instruction is Swedish, applicants must prove proficiency in Swedish to the level required for basic eligibility for higher studies.
Form of instruction
The teaching is web-based and the language of instruction is English. No physical meetings are included. The course is taught via one of the university's electronic learning platforms and presupposes a great individual responsibility to take part in the course's instructions and lectures online. The studies are characterized by a high degree of independence, critical reflection and active search for knowledge. The course offers opportunities for group discussion.
Examinations are conducted in the form of individually written reports in connection with each module. For students who have not passed the regular examination, an additional examination opportunity is arranged in close connection with this. When grading, the three-point scale is applied: pass, pass with distinction or fail. All examinations included in the course must be completed before grades are obtained. If there are special reasons, the examiner has the right to decide on another form of examination. Re-examination and other examination based on the same syllabus as the regular examination is guaranteed for two years after the student's first registration for the course. After two failed re-examinations for a certain course or part of a course, the student has the right to change examiner at a written request to the head of department.
Transfers The course can be part of a master's degree in economic history. For foreign students or for students who so wish, grades are given in accordance with ECTS through a special certificate. Students have the right to apply to have a previous education or experience evaluated for transfer of credits. For more information, see: https://www.umu.se/en/education/study-system/ and the Higher Education Ordinance (Chapter 6). The application for credit is sent to the Student Center/Examina. A rejection of an application for credit can be appealed (Higher Education Ordinance, Chapter 12) to the Board of Appeal for Higher Education. This applies both if the entire and parts of the application for credit are rejected.