This seminar course delves into contemporary debates surrounding the influence of business entities on politics, policy-making processes, and societies, while also examining the politico-economic systems that arise from interactions between businesses, states, and societies. Throughout this course, we will investigate the various mechanisms employed by businesses to safeguard their interests and property rights, as well as to gain and wield political influence both in domestic and foreign policy arenas. Additionally, we will scrutinize the strategies employed by governments, political actors and international organizations to shape business preferences and behavior. 


Our comparative approach encompasses not only advanced democracies and market economies but also includes hybrid and illiberal regimes. In addition to covering traditional topics related to business-state interactions such as corporate lobbying, raiding, state/business capture, corporate social responsibility, and political activism, and the concept of developmental/predatory states, we will delve into the most recent developments. This includes the role of businesses in shaping national policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, their reactions to the Russian war against Ukraine, and corporate strategies in the evolving geopolitical landscape. 

Through case studies, discussions, and research projects, students will gain a comprehensive understanding of the dynamic interactions between the business and political realms.