The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2018

Course handbook


This course concentrates on the ways in which social change happens at the global level and explores how different societies are influenced and challenged by such changes. It provides students with key insights into the economic, political, and social implications of globalisation for social justice and development. The course considers the impacts of globalisation at the local, national, and international scale. Topics and methods are drawn from the disciplines of sociology, economics, politics, and geography. It helps students to analyse the consequences of major globalisation processes (such as the transnationalisation of policies, ideas, ideologies, and population movements) for human development and the role of powerful agents like international organisations and states underlying these processes. Students will also explore the root causes of new global risks and crises (such as global inequality, global poverty, global financial crises, conflicts, and the violation of human rights, democratic deficit, and environmental degradations) and work towards the proposition of alternatives and solutions based on a new notion of global social justice.

Availability2018 Course Timetables


  • Semester 1 - 2018


  • Semester 1 - 2018

Replacing course(s)

This course replaces the following course(s): SOCA3420. Students who have successfully completed SOCA3420 are not eligible to enrol in SOCA2400.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Explain major globalisation processes and global transformations

2. Develop analytical framework in order to research major social and welfare problems at the global/international level.

3. Critically analyse the effects of globalisation on economic growth, income distribution, poverty, education, health, social care, and the environment.

4. Critically evaluate welfare policies and policy reforms regarding the changing conditions at the supranational level.

5. Explain and analyse the consequences that major global crises and problems may have for social welfare at the local and national levels.

6. Compare developed and developing (Third World) societies in terms of consequences that global changes and globalisation processes may have for their social welfare.

7. Analyse global welfare inequalities (in education, health, housing, employment, democracy, etc.), in terms of their causes and consequences.


This course will critically review the mainstream theories of globalisation in terms of their ability to explain global social changes and their unprecedented challenges to human development, welfare, and rights.

The course discusses case studies from both the global North and global South in order to improve the capacity of students for analysing the social consequences of globalisation for different communities. Among the key issues examined in this course are global crises (of food, fuel, and finance), climate change, global warfare, conflicts and violence, global inequalities, immigration, health inequalities, and economic insecurity.

The course takes an interdisciplinary approach, combining perspectives from sociology, political science, welfare studies, international relations, geography, and cultural studies. Finally, by drawing upon critical interpretations of globalisation and the situated viewpoints of oppression and resistance among marginalized people, the course opens up an alternative angle towards understanding current global changes and the provision of social justice.

Topics are likely to include:

  1. Contested meanings of globalisation: a buzzword or reality? Identifying the key issues, historical background and ideological dimensions;
  2. Effects of global change/globalisation: Is human welfare and development in decline?
  3. Globalisation theories and ideological discourses of development;
  4. Global capitalism, free trade and economic development;
  5. Welfare states and welfare democracy in the age of global uncertainties;
  6. Towards a global welfare regime? How to influence global change and how to deal with global problems;
  7. The globalisation project and its disharmonies;
  8. Global nexus of inequality and poverty;
  9. Global challenges to economic/financial security;
  10. Global challenges to democracy: democratic and civil rights;
  11. Global challenges to health and wellbeing: global health, pandemics, pathologies of globalisation;
  12. Global environmental challenges: climate change, pollution, population movements, resources;
  13. Global challenges to security, peace, and human rights: terrorism, conflicts, cultural/religious clashes, and violence;
  14. The future of globalisation, alternative global changes, and global justice in 21st century;


This course replaces SOCA3420. If you have successfully completed SOCA3420 you cannot enrol in this course.

Assumed knowledge

40 units of study at 1000 level

Assessment items

Written Assignment: Essay/Written Assignment

Presentation: Group Presentations

Contact hours

Callaghan and Ourimbah


Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term