Economies of East Asia - ECON 377 - 70

Georgetown University Qatar

Spring 2021


Course will be conducted online so adjustments may be made in the material and schedule


Instructor: Dennis C. McCornac, Ph.D.   


Office Hours. Available in Zoom conferencing. Please email me if you would like to meet in Zoom and go to Office hours.


Course Outline (subject to update):


Course Description: This course is designed to provide students with an overview of the contemporary economic development process and current economic environment of China and Japan, as well as such countries as Cambodia, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam. Particular emphasis will be placed on understanding the diversity of the region and the role that economics, politics and culture play in the growth of these economies.


Goals of the Course:

·       To expose students to the diversity of the economic and political realities of the East Asian region.

·       Develop an understanding of economic theory used to analyze the rapid development in the region.

·       To give students the opportunity to critically evaluate the development policies implemented in various countries.

·       Enable students to engage in discussions of the current economic and political environment of the East Asian region.

·       Provide students with an understanding of how the dynamics of this region affect the world economy.


Students are expected to prepare for class by completing all readings PRIOR to each class meeting in Zoom. Thoughtful and constructive class participation is expected, as it will both help you to better understand the material and enhance the learning process for all.  In addition, students will be expected to read a newspaper or news websites on a daily basis to keep abreast of events that affect the region.


Recommended Texts: There is no one "complete" textbook on the economies of East Asia. Thus, a number of resources will be utilized. 


Required Readings: Required and optional readings will be posted on the course outline and additional articles webpages. The power point presentations may also contain links to additional readings.

Additional Readings: Additional readings will be put on the additional articles’ webpage (link from course outline page.


Internet Resources: The development of East Asia today moves so fast that overnight government policy changes or fluctuations of new markets can render the most recent books out of date. Thus, the instructor will make use of multi-media technology in teaching, providing students with up-to-date information about East Asia. The Internet will become an important educational resource to stimulate student’s interest, expand discussion, and enrich understanding of the course materials by bringing textbook theories to life with pertinent real-world examples. A comprehensive list of websites is available on the course outline.


Course Requirements: Exams, Short Papers and Consultant Report:


The course requirements are listed below:


1.   Three short written or presentation assignments. Details and due dates are available on the course outline. Each assignment is worth 10 points.

2.   Exam 1 worth 20 points.

3.   Consultant Report – This report is worth 20 points and the description is available below. Due date is specified on the course outline. The report is to be done in groups of two (2) or three (3). Further details will be provided in class.

4.   Class Attendance and participation is worth 10 points.

5.   Take-home final exam is worth 20 points and will be cumulative.


Grading Scale:


Method of Evaluation

Points Possible

Assignments (3) – 10 points each


Exam 1


Consultant Report


Class Participation


Final Exam





Consultant Report: One of the requirements for successfully completing this course is a consultant report on a topic relevant to a particular country or the region. The consultant report will need to be both in report and presentation form. The report is to be done in groups of two (2) or at most three (3).


1. The purpose of a consultant report is to apply economic analysis to an issue in a country or the region of East Asia.

2. To accomplish this task, think of yourself as a consultant hired to recommend a solution to a specific problem.

3. Be sure to limit the scope of the problem.

4. Make sure you make use of all available resources to arrive at a well-researched recommendation. 

5. A fifteen to twenty-minute presentation to the class will be required.


Class Policies:


1. Written Assignments: All written assignments must be turned in by the end of the day on the due date. Please upload in Canvas in a Microsoft Word file. Written assignments must be word-processed and 1.5 spaced, using 12-point Times New Roman font. You must cite outside work when appropriate. You may use any citation style as long as you use it correctly and consistently.

2. Late Work: Late work will be penalized by one full letter grade each day.

3. Attendance: You are expected to attend all class meetings. Attendance will be taken and counted towards your class participation grade. Unexcused absences will strongly negatively impact your participation grade.


Honor System: Every student has the responsibility to abide by the GUQ Honor System. Review it at


Suspected infractions of the Honor System will be referred to the Honor Council. If a student is found in violation, we reserve the right to award a failing grade on the assignment or the course as a whole, in addition to any sanction that the Honor Council and the Dean may apply.


Title IX & Non-Discrimination:


As faculty at Georgetown University, we are committed to our responsibilities under Title IX, as well as the University’s non-discrimination policies.  For details of University policies, please refer to the following links:


Use of Cameras During Online Classes:


There is no university policy on camera use in online classes. However, students are strongly encouraged to turn on their computer/device cameras when participating in class. Students are required to understand and abide by the university's policy on virtual learning security which prohibits any student from photographing or videorecording another student's image via Zoom or another online platform, as well as the dissemination of any such photographs or video recordings. Violations are subject to adjudication under the Code of Student Conduct.