The aim of this module is to consider and discuss current issues in the international social, economic and political arenas, and to understand how these issues impact upon the strategies, behaviour and decision-taking of multinational enterprises.  The module will draw heavily upon recent and current real-world events, and it is inevitable that the precise content of the syllabus will change to reflect this. 


On completion of this module, students should:

  • Have a critical awareness of how recent and current events in the social, economic and political arenas are likely to influence the behaviour, decision-taking and strategy of multinational firms from both the industrialised and developing countries.
  • Be able to understand the alternative arguments concerning how contemporary trends are likely to shape international business strategy, at present and into the future.
  • Be able to understand how changes to the international environment are likely to reconfigure the geographic distribution of international business activity

Outline syllabus

  • Key trends in the distribution of foreign direct investment stocks and flows, and their determinants
  • Key trends in international trade flows, and their determinants
  • The characteristics, indicators and debates of globalization: is globalization in retreat?
  • The impact of the global financial crisis (2007-9) on international business activity
  • Rising consumption in emerging markets and its implications for the industrialised countries
  • Is international business sustainable?: How climate change will affect the multinational enterprise.
  • The rise of the developing country multinational enterprise and the implications for industrialised country firms.
  • Energy security and the international firm
  • Geopolitical stability and the strategies of multinational enterprises.