Singapore University of Social Sciences

Political Economy of Asia

Political Economy of Asia (ECO352)


This course examines Asia’s economic development and the linkages between politics and economics, focusing on East and Southeast Asia. The key questions to be addressed in this course are: How have Asian governments intervened in their domestic economies? How and to what extent have Asian economies leveraged opportunities in the global economy? What are the key factors facilitating or impeding Asia’sgrowth and development? How does China affect the economic development of Asia, and how might Asia’s future political economy landscape look like? Importantly, this course surveys some of key issues affecting Asia’s economic development, drawing relevant concepts across a variety of disciplines from economics and business to political science to sociology, prompting students to take an interdisciplinary and integrated approach to understand Asia’s complex political economy.

Level: 3
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY REGULAR SEMESTER


  • Introduction to Political Economy.
  • Governments and Markets in Asia.
  • Pathways to Industrialisation.
  • The Asian Financial Crisis.
  • International Trade and Investment.
  • Global Value Chains and the Factory Asia Phenomenon.
  • Population.
  • Human Resource Development and Global Talent Flows.
  • Poverty and Inequality.
  • Social Inclusion and Sustainable Development.
  • China’s Rise and Asia’s Development.
  • The Future Landscape of Asia’s Political Economy.

Learning Outcome

  • Explain international political economy concepts and discuss how they are applicable in contemporary Asia.
  • Analyse how governments and markets interact in Asia.
  • Contrast the pathways to industrialisation in Asia.
  • Evaluate the Asian Financial Crisis of 1997.
  • Compare the international trade and investment patterns in Asia.
  • Inspect global value chains and the Factory Asia phenomenon.
  • Illustrate the problems of population growth and human resource development in Asia.
  • Appraise social inclusion and sustainable development in Asia.
  • Assess China’s rise and Asia’s development.
  • Question the future landscape of Asia’s political economy.
  • Apply essential knowledge and interpersonal skills to work effectively in a team.
  • Demonstrate written proficiency.
  • Practise making oral presentations in topics related to the Political Economy of various Asia economies.
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