International Business Environment

The details
Essex Business School
Colchester Campus
Undergraduate: Level 5
Thursday 03 October 2024
Friday 13 December 2024
21 March 2024


Requisites for this module
BE400 or BE401 or IA152



Key module for

BSC N200 Business Management,
BSC N201 Business Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC N202 Business Management (Including Year Abroad),
BSC N204 Business Management (Including Placement Year),
BA N1R9 Business Management with a Modern Language,
BSC N2N5 Marketing Management (Including Foundation Year),
BSC NN25 Marketing Management,
BSC NN2M Marketing Management (Including Placement Year),
BSC NNF5 Marketing Management (Including Year Abroad),
MMANNN35 Marketing Management,
MMANNN36 Marketing Management (Including Placement Year),
MMANNN37 Marketing Management (Including Year Abroad),
BSC N260 Business and Human Resource Management,
BSC N261 Business and Human Resource Management (including Placement Year),
BSC N262 Business and Human Resource Management (including Year Abroad),
BSC N263 Business and Human Resource Management (Including Foundation Year),
BA N29RCO Business Management with Language Studies

Module description

When we talk about business or 'the market', often what comes to mind are global corporations and the brands we see on and around us every day. Our common sense understanding of business is that it is international in context and global in scope. This module explores what it means to do business in a global economy.

During the course of the module students will develop an understanding of how the international economy and transnational corporations work (and for whom); what 'globalisation' is and what it means for business, nations, workers and communities; the effects of climate change and how it has been brought about by 'business as usual'; how firms like Google and Amazon are reshaping business practices; what it takes, from mining raw materials to marketing, to produce and sell smart phones and laptops; and what sort of farming produces a global pandemic and why there are more on the way.

Module aims

1. To enable students to develop a critical understand of the global economy and how it works
2. To facilitate student’s understanding of how the global business environment impacts on human rights, employment conditions, the global environment, and human health and wellbeing.
3. To enable students to critically engaged with and further develop their understanding of contemporary trends within the global economy, including organisational and business trends, and social, economic and environmental developments.

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:

1. Critically understand what is meant by the concepts `globalisation`, `neoliberalism`, and global business environment.
2. Develop, through discussion and debate, reasoning skills applicable to a range of contemporary issues in global political economy
3. Critically analyse global business practices.

Module information

On successful completion of the module, students will gain a more advanced understanding of the international context which helps to shape the strategies and operations of organisations, and explore some of the current issues and challenges facing organisations within the international business environment. In particular, you focus on international political economy, covering the major economic systems in the world, and tracing the historical evolution of the global order.

Learning and teaching methods

10 x 1 hour lectures that focus on the concepts, issues and theories related to the International Business Environment. This formal lecture each week will present an overview of each topic and provide the stimulus for your further investigation of the subject area. It is essential you appreciate that the lectures are only designed to provide you with a starting point for your studies. Your lecture notes alone are unlikely to be of sufficient scope to enable you to pass the module successfully. 9 x 1 hour classes that enable to you actively engage with your reading through case study analysis, close reading of theoretical and empirical research-based texts, in-class discussion, group work and student presentations. Classes are NOT another lecture. Whilst they involve structured activities, they are intended to be student led. It is therefore imperative that you prepare thoroughly before the class through reading, taking notes and preparing responses to questions. Attendance is compulsory and will be monitored. In addition there will be a range of supplementary materials, including videos and documentaries, made available via Moodle. It is recommended that you make use of these materials to develop your understanding of the module topics.


The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course.
The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students.
Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Coursework weighting
Coursework   BE413 coursework 2 Journal    50% 
Coursework   BE413 coursework 1 essay    50% 

Additional coursework information

Assessment 1 is a 1500 word coursework essay (50%).

Assessment 2 is a journal which runs over 5 lectures, and students need to find one example that fits that week’s lecture and outline how it is an example of that lecture’s topic. The word count is 3-400 words per entry, resulting in a 2000 word assessment (50%).

Exam format definitions

  • Remote, open book: Your exam will take place remotely via an online learning platform. You may refer to any physical or electronic materials during the exam.
  • In-person, open book: Your exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer to any physical materials such as paper study notes or a textbook during the exam. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, open book (restricted): The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may refer only to specific physical materials such as a named textbook during the exam. Permitted materials will be specified by your department. Electronic devices may not be used in the exam.
  • In-person, closed book: The exam will take place on campus under invigilation. You may not refer to any physical materials or electronic devices during the exam. There may be times when a paper dictionary, for example, may be permitted in an otherwise closed book exam. Any exceptions will be specified by your department.

Your department will provide further guidance before your exams.

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Nicholas Beuret, email:
Dr Nicholas Beuret, Dr Malte Jaunch, Rasha Elsawy, Kehinde Shoroye, James Fox and Theofanis Lyrintzis



External examiner

Dr Christopher David Land
Available via Moodle
Of 135 hours, 135 (100%) hours available to students:
0 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s), module, or event type.


Further information
Essex Business School

* Please note: due to differing publication schedules, items marked with an asterisk (*) base their information upon the previous academic year.

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