Your future starts here.
The Institute of Political Economy at Carleton University is the only graduate program of its kind in Canada. Since its founding in 1989, the Institute has developed an international reputation as one of the top destinations in North America for studies in political economy—an interdisciplinary approach to the study of power and the (re)production of social relations in contemporary societies.
The interdisciplinary nature of our programs attracts students from diverse undergraduate backgrounds such as Sociology, Political Science, Geography, Journalism, Environmental Studies, Legal Studies, Communications, History, and Economics. Students are given the freedom to define their own research topics, enrol in courses from other departments, and work under the supervision of a wide range of recognized experts.
Through the application of diverse critical political economy analyses, students are able to rigorously explore contemporary Canadian and global issues such as finance, migration and borders, labour and power relations, environmental justice, Indigenous resurgence, race and racism, gender and sexuality, colonialism, food sovereignty, and community activism.
“The Institute serves as a crucial nexus for students and academics alike. It is one major reason why, in the eyes of many Canadian social scientists, Carleton University is one of the very best research and teaching institutions in the country.”
— Prof. William Carroll, University of Victoria
Core seminars at the Institute are small (usually 10-20 students), giving students the opportunity to study closely with leading Canadian and international scholars. Every year, two distinguished scholars with international research profile spend a semester each in residence at the Institute, teaching as visiting professors during the fall and winter terms.
Alumni of Political Economy have completed their theses, research projects, and dissertations on a wide range of important issues and have followed their research interests to help influence positive change in both the private and public sectors. A significant number of our MA graduates go on to pursue doctoral work at Carleton or at top universities in North America and the UK, in a range of disciplines. Others have found work for the federal and provincial governments, NGOs, and trade unions immediately following graduation. Visit our Alumni page, which features a number of alumni profiles, for a glimpse into the career paths of Political Economy graduates.
Interdisciplinary degree programs in Political Economy
The Institute offers three programs, with a total of six diploma or degree options.
Admission is competitive. Each year, the Institute attracts a small but outstanding cohort of students to our MA program from other Canadian universities and from abroad. We also partner with nine other Carleton departments in offering a collaborative PhD program, and in 2020 we admitted our first students to the Diploma Program in Work and Labour. More information about our graduate diploma and graduate degrees is here:
- Graduate Diploma in Work and Labour
- Master of Arts in Political Economy
- with a Concentration in Work and Labour
- with a Specialization in African Studies
- with a Specialization in Latin American and Caribbean Studies
- with a Specialization in Climate Change
- with a Specialization in Accessibility (coming soon)
- Collaborative PhD with a specialization in Political Economy
COVID-19 Service Update: As Carleton University continues to follow Ottawa Public Health guidelines, we are currently working in person and remotely during our regular business hours (8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday). For specifics please go here. More information on Carleton’s COVID response can be found here.
Research and Faculty
Tuesday, March 7, 2023
IPE Institute Administator wins a 2022-23 Service Excellence Award
We are very pleased and proud that the Institute Administrator Tabbatha Malouin is one of five individual recipients of the Carleton University Service Excellence Award this year, which... More
We are very pleased and proud that the Institute Administrator Tabbatha Malouin is one of five individual recipients of the Carleton University Service Excellence Award this year, which was presented at an awards ceremony on February 23. More than 200 Carleton staff were nominated this year, and Tabbatha's achievement reflects both the depth of... More
Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Leo Panitch Symposium
Leo Panitch, mentor, supporter, and the inspiration behind the creation of the Institute of Political Economy passed away from COVID-19 and pneumonia on December 19, 2020, shortly after a cancer diagnosis. Unfortunately, COVID restriction put our plans for an... More
Leo Panitch, mentor, supporter, and the inspiration behind the creation of the Institute of Political Economy passed away from COVID-19 and pneumonia on December 19, 2020, shortly after a cancer diagnosis. Unfortunately, COVID restriction put our plans for an event to celebrate his legacy on hold. On Saturday, December 10th, 2022, we were finally... More
Friday, July 29, 2022
MA Student Catherine Littlefield talks about her experience with community-based research with the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun
My Experience with Community-Based Research with the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun By Catherine Littlefield MA... More
My Experience with Community-Based Research with the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun By Catherine Littlefield MA Political Economy Student Photos provided by Catherine Littlefield After completing the first two terms of my M.A. with the Institute of Political Economy, I’ve started my thesis research this summer and have been staying in Mayo, Yukon... More
Thursday, June 9, 2022
Placement in Political Economy
The Institute of Political Economy offers a one-of-a-kind placement opportunity, PECO 5904, in which students gain hands-on experience and apply their academic skillset to the community. Available to all students at the Institute, and a key component of its... More
The Institute of Political Economy offers a one-of-a-kind placement opportunity, PECO 5904, in which students gain hands-on experience and apply their academic skillset to the community. Available to all students at the Institute, and a key component of its Work and Labour programs, this unique course links students with the community organizations to... More