Critical Policy Studies (2018/19)

Course Description: 

In this course students learn how to critically examine policy development, practices and goals, with particular focus on gender in global politics. Besides introducing students to methods for critical policy analysis, the course asks how ‘gender’ (as a policy and goal) has influenced global politics. This course encourages students to think both conceptually and practically about the implementation of gender norms, concepts, and frameworks in global policy, and gives them the tools to be able to critically review and assess policy frameworks. As such, this course applies feminist principles and theories to critically examine policy issues. As well as learning critical policy analysis as a method, students can expect some historical and theoretical overview of how global policy is formed, the primary institutions involved in global governance and policy formation, and how to analyze global policy through feminist and gender frameworks. These aims are achieved through exploration of some key issues in gender and global politics, such as violence against women and girls, international development programming, migration and feminist foreign policy. 


Learning Outcomes: 

Upon successful completion of this unit students will be able to demonstrate:

  1. The capacity for balanced and reasoned analysis (in spoken and written form) of key issues and controversies in forming gender-sensitive global policy.
  2. The ability to examine and evaluate global policies on gender, as well as gender-blind policies for their gendered assumptions and impacts.
  3. The ability to connect theory and case study to real-life situations.
  4. An understanding of the relationships between states, key international institutions and global civil society in processes of political and economic governance.
  5. An understanding of key conceptual and empirical debates on global governance.


Indicative assessment

Attendance and participation = 20%

Leading class discussion = 10%

Op-eds/blogs (x2) = 40%

Critical policy analysis = 30%