Comparative Business History LM – 2023-2024

Teacher: Prof. Daniela Felisini
CFU: 6
Course code: 804002449
Degree: Master’s Degree “Scienze della Storia e del documento”
Course delivery modalities: In-presence
Language: English
Pre-requisites: Knowledge of contemporary history in its global dimension
Attendance: Optional
Assessment method: Oral exam
Period: 1st  term
The course deals with world economic and business history of the 20th century up to the beginning of the 21st century. It is organized as a sort of journey around the world, surfing across the two main historical dimensions of time and space. Based on a neo-institutional approach, it will compare the varieties of capitalism of the different regions, considering the enterprise and the State as major actors. Main processes will be analysed in global perspective (industrial revolutions, economic and financial crisis, energy and environmental issues, regional integration, et al..). Specific case-studies will be the object of in-depth focuses, brought into with the active participation of the students.
Text books:
Attending students have to study on:
1. Slides of the course;
2. Specific readings made available during the course.
Non-attending students will study one of the following textbooks:

  • F.Amatori, A. Colli (eds.), The Global Economy. A concise history, Routledge-Giappichelli Studies in Business and Management, 2019 (chapters: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 22).
  • F. Amatori, A. Colli, Business history: complexities and comparisons, London and New York, Routledge, 2011 (all the chapters contained in the Parts IV, V and VI).
Educational goals and expected learning outcomes:
The course aims to provide students with solid knowledge of the main aspects of the global economic and business history from the late nineteenth century to the present day. By the end of the course, students will have a good knowledge of economic processes in a transnational and global dimension. The teaching activity of this module aims to strengthen the following skills:
A) Critical Thinking: Students will be developing their ability to analyze critically both historical and present economical processes from a global perspective. In class discussions will also foster a collaborative classroom environment where students could develop peer to peer dialogue, analyzing the significance of economic processes and business strategies
B) Reading: Students will become active readers that can articulate their own interpretations with an awareness and appreciation of multiple perspectives.
C) Communication: Students will demonstrate the skills through the elaboration of a presentation, in which they shall critically analyse a relevant topic, chosen with the teacher among the topics dealt during the lessons. The inclass debate helps in building knowledge collaboratively, listening carefully and respectfully to others’ viewpoints while articulating individual ideas and questions.
Methods and criteria for verifying the learning:
Attending students will give assessed presentations in which they shall critically analyse a relevant topic, chosen with the teacher among the topics dealt during the lessons. The presentation will be the object of inclass discussion, aiming to improve peer to peer dialogue. Active participation is required.

Non attending students: final oral exam on the textbooks.

Teaching methods:
The course combines various teaching methodologies: lessons; seminars; discussions of the assigned readings. Lectures will provide the students with the necessary information and reading guidelines of the phenomena under scrutiny, while seminars will see students critically engaging with this knowledge and promoting/participating in class debates. Students are expected and required to attend every class, come prepared to classes, and participate in discussions. Seminars include in-class assessed presentations and discussion of assigned readings, assessed group works based on multimedia materials, and a final debate.
Attendance modalities: