Courses NonDegree Display 2017-2018

Course Description To PDF
Course title Business and Politics in Europe
Course code EBC2051
ECTS credits 6,5
Assessement Whole/Half Grades
Period
Period Start End Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri
1 4-9-2017 27-10-2017 X/E X/E
Level Intermediate
Coordinator Marc van Wegberg
For more information: m.vanwegberg@maastrichtuniversity.nl
Language of instruction English
Goals
- Understand the mutual interaction between Business and Politics in Europe, in particular regarding lobbying, and the implications this has for corporate strategy.
- Understand the relevant elements of institutional diversity in which firms in Europe operate, in particular how institutional diversity extends to elements other than culture.
- Understand the functioning of the European Union and differences in the political systems of the member states.
- Understand political aspects of the Euro crisis, especially the interaction between the crisis and the political organisation of the European Union.
- Understand the societal processes behind other recent developments, such as Brexit, and the dissatisfaction with the functioning of the European Union.
- Ability to apply knowledge of the European institutional environment to relevant business decisions.
- Ability to work independently on a project, including independent literature search.
- Ability to work on a project in a multinational team of people with diverse backgrounds and prior knowledge.
- Ability to interpret developments and anticipate changes in European Business & Politics for the coming 5-10 years.
Description
The course looks at the interaction between Business and Society, focussing on political issues. While political risk tended to be an issue restricted to emerging markets, recent developments, such as Brexit, have made clear that it is increasingly becoming an issue for companies in developed market economies as well. Knowledge of the interaction between business and politics has become indispensable for an ever wider group of people: leading business persons in Europe and an ever wider circle of management below the top level; consultants; employees of non-governmental organisations; and entrepreneurs working in policy sensitive areas (such as renewable energy). Clearly, participation in the course requires interest in societal processes in general and in politics in particular.
Topics covered:
- Corporate political strategy as a part of overall business strategy (ca. 20%);
- Introduction to comparative politics and comparative institutional economics, that is, comparing how the institutional setup of the economy and politics differs across countries in Europe (ca. 20%);
- Functioning of the EU, also in relation to the Euro crisis (ca. 20%);
- Empirical research of lobbying in Europe and relevance for business strategy (ca. 20%).
- Analysis of the background of recent developments, such as Brexit (10%),
- Integral approach to Corporate Social Responsibility, Corporate Political Strategy and Competitive Market strategy (ca.10%)

A creative, multidisciplinary approach is taken, using original and challenging literature from economics, business, and political science.

The course is NOT offering some kind of toolbox containing all elements necessary for doing business in Europe, as some students seem to have been expecting in the past.

Additional remarks regarding assessment methods:
- Attendance requirement: max. 2 absences allowed. Second absence might have an impact on participation grade.
- Students work in teams of 2-3 persons on a project. Teams either focus on 1-3 countries in Europe, or on EU regulation in a particular industry.
- Two or three papers (take-home assignments) on course material
- The papers have strict requirements regarding literature to be followed. They are not "free" papers.
Literature
Articles to be collected by students from the electronic library. Combination of fundamental papers with very recent literature.
Prerequisites
- Two years of study in (International) Business and/or (International) Economics at a level comparable to SBE.
- Very good working knowledge of English (reading, writing, speaking).

Special remarks follow for:
- Exchange Students;
- SBE Economics students.

Note for Exchange Students
- The course is strongly recommended to exchange students satisfying the prerequisites (see also below). Given the aims of the course, it would be very beneficial to have students from different national backgrounds, including students from outside Europe. Participation of exchange students in this course is usually greatly appreciated, both by themselves and by the regular students.
- In the past, advanced writing skills in English have proven to be critical for exchange students. If you are unsecure about your writing skills, you are advised to follow trainings in writing skills prior to or parallel to this course.
- You should be prepared and motivated to digest a wide range of topics and issues in a short time and apply these in a project together with students of different backgrounds.
- The course is NOT open to students in subjects like Political Science (including International Relations), Psychology, European Studies etc. A sound prior knowledge in International Business or International Economics is a strict requirement.

Note for SBE Economics students
As the course focuses on the institutional environment of business it fits very well into the SBE Economics curriculum. Compared to the standard Economics courses at SBE it has a more applied character. Special attention is paid to political aspects of the Euro crisis on the level of the EU. The course is especially recommended for people aspiring positions at regulatory agencies and international organisations in Europe, or at research positions within large international firms.
Teaching methods PBL / Lecture / Assignment / Groupwork
Assessment methods Final Paper / Attendance / Participation
Evaluation in previous academic year For the complete evaluation of this course please click "here"
This course belongs to the following programmes / specialisations
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation Economics and Management of Information Free Electives
Bachelor International Business Business Electives
Bachelor International Business Major Strategy
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation Economics IBE Electives
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation Emerging Markets Business Electives
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation Emerging Markets Major Strategy
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation International Business Economics Business Electives
Bachelor Economics and Business Economics Specialisation International Business Economics Major Strategy
Bachelor International Business Specialisation Emerging Markets Major Strategy
SBE Exchange Bachelor Bachelor Exchange Courses
SBE Exchange Master Bachelor Exchange Courses
SBE Non Degree Courses Bachelor Courses