intl business relationship between countries

Grading is based on the clarity of the thesis statement, reasoned support of the argument, and inclusion of material from course readings and lectures.


  • Frieden, Jeffry A. 2006. Global Capitalism: Its Fall and Rise in the Twentieth Century. W.W. Norton. ISBN 0393058085
  • Frieden, Jeffry A., David A. Lake and J. Lawrence Broz. 2017. International Political Economy: Perspectives on Global Power and Wealth. 6th ed. W.W. Norton. ISBN-13: 978-0393603880. THIS EDITION ONLY

Key concepts and terms are attached in each study guide.

ESSAY QUESTION:Scenario: You are the senior trade policy adviser to the president of “Freedonia.” The president is considering signing a free trade treaty with the neighboring country of “Utopia.” Your task is to assess the potential economic and political effects of this treaty. You recognize that the two countries are quite different economically. Your country has lots of capital (machinery) and skilled workers in comparison to Utopia, but very little farmland. By contrast, Utopia’s economy has less capital and fewer skilled workers in comparison to Freedonia, but lots of farmland.

If the president decides to sign the treaty, it goes to Freedonia’s Congress for approval. Freedonia has a bicameral legislature, with a House of Representatives and a Senate, and the trade treaty must pass both houses. In the House, there are more representatives that defend the interests of capitalists and skilled workers than representatives that defend the interests of farmers. In the Senate, by contrast, senators from farming states are in the majority.

Questions to be addressed in your essay:
1. Which groups of people within Freedonia would support the free trade agreement and which groups would oppose it? Why?

2. Given Freedonia’s institutions, would a free trade treaty be more likely to pass or fail in Congress? Why? Name one institutional reform that could change the bill’s likelihood of passing and explain why this would affect the prospects of Freedonia adopting free trade.

Question 1 Requirements for full credit: The essay correctly identifies which groups of people would support and which groups of people would oppose the free trade agreement. In justifying the answer, the essay identifies the theory that explains who wins and who loses with free trade. In laying out the theory, the essays gives a complete explanation that demonstrates a solid understanding of how it works.

Question 2 Requirements for full credit: Answer to whether the bill would be more likely to pass or fail is correct, as well as the explanation. The essay suggests an institutional reform that could plausibly change the prospects of the bill. In discussing the chances of the bill passing before and after the hypothetical institutional reform, the essay demonstrates a solid understanding of why institutions matter for trade policy.