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Graduate Calendar Archives: 2007 / 2008

Political Economy


Loeb Building A818
Telephone: 613-520-7414
Fax: 613-520-2154
Web site:

The Institute

Director of the Institute: Rianne Mahon

The Institute of Political Economy, established in 1989, developed out of the Graduate Summer School of Political Economy, which was formed in 1983. The summer school was built on the strong tradition of interdisciplinary studies at Carleton, and on the interests of numerous faculty at Carleton involved in political economy. Distinguished international scholars have been attracted to teach in the summer school. Through the Institute, these distinguished visitors will now be in residence during the normal academic year, in addition to the summer program.

The Institute offers a program of study and research leading to the degree of Master of Arts in Political Economy, the only program of its kind in Canada. Its interdisciplinary program is designed to offer students both an exposure to the core concepts of political economy and an opportunity to develop individual areas of research concentration.

The program focuses on investigating the relationship between the economy and politics as they affect the social and cultural life of societies, and secondly, focuses on the historical processes whereby social change is located in the interaction of the economic, political, cultural, and ideological moments of social life.

Carleton University has developed a strong tradition in political economy. Faculty members from most of the social sciences and history participate regularly in the Institute. The program's curriculum includes courses with a political economy orientation that are offered by other departments, schools, and institutes. The Master of Arts in Political Economy is an opportunity for students to study political economy from the perspective of different disciplines within a single program.

Master of Arts

Admission Requirements

The normal requirement for admission to the master's program is B.A.(Honours), with at least high honours standing, in one of the disciplines represented in the Institute. Prospective applicants without such qualifications may be considered for admission if they have both a strong academic record and relevant work experience. Such students normally are asked to complete a qualifying year of study with at least high honours standing before proceeding to the master's program.

Program Requirements

The Master of Arts in Political Economy is a 5.0 credit program, one of which may be at the 4000- (honours undergraduate) level. Each candidate, in consultation with the Institute, must select and follow one of two optional patterns:

  • 3.0 credits, a thesis equivalent to 2.0 credits, and an oral examination of the thesis
  • 4.0 credits, a research essay equivalent to 1.0 credit, and an oral examination of the research essay

Whichever pattern is selected, all students in the Institute are required to take PECO 5000 and PECO 5001, two 0.5-credit seminars offered by the Institute.

Academic Standing

All master's candidates must maintain B standing or better (GPA of 8.0). A candidate may, with the recommendation of the Institute and the approval of the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research, be allowed a grade of C+ in 0.5 credit.

Collaborative Ph.D. with a Specialization in Political Economy

The Collaborative Ph.D. with a Specialization in Political Economy is especially designed for doctoral students in participating programs in the Faculties of Arts and Social Science and Public Affairs and Management who wish to enrich their training in a particular discipline or area of study by developing a political economy approach through interdisciplinary dialogue.

Program Coordinator P.R. Mahon, Director

Institute of Political Economy

Supporting Units

The following units participate in the Collaborative Program in Political Economy:

  • School of Canadian Studies
  • Department of Geography
  • Department of History
  • Department of Political Science
  • School of Public Policy and Administration
  • Department of Sociology and Anthropology

The program is managed by the Program Committee, comprised of representatives from the supporting units. The Program Committee is responsible for admitting students into the Collaborative Program and the Coordinator administers the program.

Members of the Collaborative Program

  • H. Armstrong, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • J. Chevalier, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • J. Clapp, School of Canadian Studies
  • W. Clement, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • B. Curtis, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • S. Dalby, Department of Geography
  • D. Dean, Department of History
  • J. DeBardeleben, Department of Political Science
  • G. B. Doern, School of Public Policy and Administration
  • M. Dolan, Department of Political Science
  • P. Dutkiewicz, Department of Political Science
  • L. Freeman, Department of Political Science
  • C. Gabriel, Department of Political Science
  • N. Hillmer, Department of History
  • A. Hunt, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • F. Klodawsky, Department of Geography
  • P. Litt, School of Canadian Studies and Department of History
  • L. Macdonald, Department of Political Science
  • F. Mackenzie, Department of Geography
  • R. Mahon,School of Public Policy and Administration, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • D. Marshall,Department of History
  • L. Mills, School of Public Policy and Administration
  • D. Muise,Department of History
  • R. Paehlke, School of Canadian Studies
  • F. Rocher, School of Canadian Studies
  • B. Rutherford, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • P. Ryan, School of Public Policy and Administration
  • J. Sangster, School of Canadian Studies
  • J. Siltanen, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • D. Stasiulis, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • D. Swartz, School of Public Policy and Administration
  • I. Wallace, Department of Geography
  • W. Walters, Department of Political Science
  • R. Warskett, Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Application to the Program

Students who are enrolled in a doctoral program in one of the participating units may apply to the Institute of Political Economy for admission to the Collaborative Program. Admission to the program is determined by the Program Committee and will normally take place before the end of the first year of registration in one of the participating doctoral programs.

Admission Requirements

Admission requirements to the Collaborative Ph.D. with a Specialization in Political Economy are:

Registration in the Ph.D. program of one of the participating units;

Registration in, or successful completion of, at least one course or comprehensive field with political economy content. This will normally be a course offered by the student's home unit but could also be selected from appropriate courses in other units. See Selection of Courses for a list of acceptable courses;

Selection of a thesis topic with political economy content. The Program Committee will determine, in consultation with the supervisor, if the political economy content of the thesis meets the requirements of the Collaborative Program.

Degree Requirements

Students enrolled in the Collaborative Program in Political Economy must meet the requirements of their respective home units as well as those of the Collaborative Program. The requirements of the Collaborative Program do not, however, add to the number of credits students are required to accumulate by their home unit and the credit value of the degree remains the same.

The requirements of the Collaborative Program are:

1. PECO 6000 (0.5 credit) Political Economy: Core Concepts

2. In addition, the following requirement(s) specific to the doctoral programs of the supporting units:

  • Canadian Studies: a relevant political economy course from the approved list (0.5 credit) or the comprehensive in the major field of Policy, Economy and Society
  • Geography: PECO 6000 replaces GEOG 6003 or GEOG 6004 (0.5 credit), the field seminar The Geography of Societal Change, and students must register in GEOG 6906, the comprehensive The Geography of Societal Change.
  • History: a relevant political economy course from the approved list (0.5 credit) or minor comprehensive field in political economy
  • Political Science: a relevant political economy course from the approved list (0.5 credit).
  • Public Policy and Administration: a relevant political economy course from the approved list (0.5 credit) .
  • Sociology: a relevant political economy course from the approved list (0.5 credit) or part of comprehensive preparation in the sub-field of political economy.

3. Submission and successful defence of a doctoral thesis on a political economy topic in the participating unit.

The proposed topic must be approved by the student's home unit and by the Program Committee. At least one of the student's advisors or members of the examining committee will be selected from among the core faculty for the Collaborative Program.

Graduate Courses

Not all of the following courses are offered in a given year. For an up-to-date statement of course offerings and to determine the term of offering, consult the class schedule at

The Institute's courses are not normally open to undergraduate students.

PECO 5000 [0.5 credit]
Theories of Political Economy
A survey of the core concepts and ideas proposed by both the founders and modern practitioners of political economy. Particular attention will be paid to contemporary theorists and classical theorists such as Smith, Ricardo, Marx, Mill, Schumpeter, Keynes, Veblen, and Innis.
PECO 5001 [0.5 credit]
The Methodology of Political Economy
An examination of the methods, procedures, and rules for developing theory and guiding inquiry in political economy research, including topics such as logic of inquiry, conceptualization, research design, dialectics, level of analysis, comparison, evidence and statistics.
PECO 5501 [0.5 credit]
Selected Problems in Political Economy I
(Also listed as SOCI 5504 and PSCI 5501.)
PECO 5502 [0.5 credit]
Selected Problems in Political Economy II
(Also listed as SOCI 5505 and PSCI 5502.)
PECO 5900 [0.5 credit]
Tutorial in Political Economy
Directed readings on selected aspects of political economy, involving preparation of papers as the basis for discussion with the tutor. Offered when no regular course offering meets a candidate's specific needs.
Prerequisite: permission of the Director.
PECO 5908 [1.0 credit]
Research Essay
Directly linked to the student's course work, the research essay must be interdisciplinary in approach.
PECO 5909 [2.0 credits]
M.A. Thesis
The thesis is an alternative to the research essay. It must also be interdisciplinary in approach, and requires greater substance and originality than the Research Essay. Normally, a student's thesis committee will be composed of members from more than one discipline.
PECO 6000 [0.5 credit]
Political Economy: Core Concepts
Core concepts in political economy, drawn from classical and contemporary writings. Topics will be selected in consultation with participating units, taking into account the potential number of students, their research interests and those of the participating units.

Selection of Courses

In addition to the graduate courses offered by, or associated with, the Institute, the courses listed below are relevant to students of political economy and would, with the prior approval of the Institute, be used to design a coherent and internally complementary set of courses to fulfil degree requirements. The list is not exclusive and is subject to change. Moreover, students in the Master's program may select 1.0 credit in political economy that is offered at the 4000-level.

Note: the number of spaces in graduate courses offered by other departments may be limited, and registration may be conditional upon obtaining the prior approval of the department concerned. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that permission is obtained from the appropriate department prior to registering in any of the following courses.

The Institute expects to attract high quality graduate students who will be likely to continue to a second post-graduate degree. Master's students will be directed to consult with the department where they might wish to pursue doctoral studies so that they may select courses that will prepare them for this next stage.

BUSI 5300, BUSI 5301

Canadian Studies
CDNS 5101, CDNS 5102, CDNS 5201, CDNS 5202, CDNS 5501, CDNS 5601

ECON 5101, ECON 5201, ECON 5202, ECON 5403, ECON 5500, ECON 5504, ECON 5505, ECON 5507, ECON 5806, ECON 5807


  • GEOG 4207 Urban Development and Analysis
  • GEOG 4300 Comparative Environmental Movements
  • GEOG 4400 Environmental Geopolitics
  • GEOG 4401 Geographies of Globalization
  • GEOG 5005, GEOG 5200, GEOG 5400, GEOG 5401, GEOG 5404, GEOG 5500

HIST 5506, HIST 5508, HIST 5509, HIST 5602, HIST 5800

International Affairs
INAF 5007, INAF 5101, INAF 5300, INAF 5302, INAF 5303, INAF 5501, INAF 5502, INAF 5401, INAF 5601

  • LAWS 4001 Law, Family and Gender
  • LAWS 4002 Feminist Theories of Law
  • LAWS 4003 Historical Perspectives on Law, Economy and Society
  • LAWS 5002, LAWS 5003, LAWS 5004, LAWS 5005, LAWS 5006, LAWS 5007, LAWS 5200, LAWS 5302
Political Science
  • PSCI 4000 Topics in Canadian Government and Politics
  • PSCI 4002 Policy Seminar
  • PSCI 4009 Quebec Politics
  • PSCI 4102 Politics of Western Liberal Democracies
  • PSCI 4103 The State in Advanced Capitalist Societies
  • PSCI 4104 Theory and Practice in Third World Development
  • PSCI 4105 Selected Problems in Third World Development
  • PSCI 4401 Business-Government Relations in Canada
  • PSCI 4500 Feminist Analysis in Comparative Perspective
  • PSCI 4505 Transitions to Democracy
  • PSCI 4603 Analysis of International Political Economy
  • PSCI 4604 Selected Problems in International Political Economy
  • PSCI 5003, PSCI 5008, PSCI 5101, PSCI 5105, PSCI 5107, PSCI 5202, PSCI 5501, PSCI 5502, PSCI 5504, PSCI 5507, PSCI 5509, PSCI 5607

Public Administration
PADM 5001, PADM 5002, PADM 5107, PADM 5401, PADM 5604, PADM 5607, PADM 5701, PADM 5703, PADM 5806, PADM 5808

Social Work

  • SOWK 4102 Aboriginal Peoples and Social Policy
  • SOWK 4103 Practice and Policy in Immigration
    SOWK 5102, SOWK 5105, SOWK 5106, SOWK 5301, SOWK 5805

Sociology and Anthropology
SOCI 5000, SOCI 5002, SOCI 5007, SOCI 5109, SOCI 5202, SOCI 5204, SOCI 5205, SOCI 5209, SOCI 5300, SOCI 5301, SOCI 5302, SOCI 5308, SOCI 5400, SOCI 5404, SOCI 5405, SOCI 5408, SOCI 5409, SOCI 5500, SOCI 5504, SOCI 5607, SOCI 5608, SOCI 5804, SOCI 5806

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