SUM4505 – Capitalism, Corruption and the Climate Crisis

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Course content

This course -  led by Eva Joly (the former Arne Næss professor) and Nina Witoszek (project leader of the Arne Næss Programme at SUM) -  will explore the dark underside of globalization by focusing on concrete cases of abuses of social and environmental rights.

Eva Joly is the legendary Norwegian-French judge known for her struggle against corruption of powerful multinational companies, as well as her environmental engagement. She is the former candidate for the President of France, and is now a parliamentarian in the European Green Party.

Joly’s specialty has been collecting high profile scalps of environmental and financial villains, studying the links between socio-environmental degradation and tax evasion as well as trying to find legal ways to prevent it. In France she is still remembered, feared and revered for her famous investigation of the abuses of the oil multinational Elf Aquitain – a scandal  which shook France’s political and financial elites.She’s worked as an adviser in many countries, from Greece and Iceland to Afghanistan. She’s written several books, the latest being "Justice under Siege" and "French Uranium", illuminating the role of powerful corporations as frequent drivers of poverty, social inequality and environmental destruction.   

Eva Joly’s one week master course will be focused on an in-depth exploration of the connection between social and environmental justice, environmental criminality and models of governance.  Her lectures will combine insights from her work in  - and experience from - Europe, Africa and Asia.  

Learning outcome

The course will provide the students with the following skills:

  • It will teach them to identify links between international corruption and the use of tax havens on the one ha hand, and environmental degradation and social injustice on the other.
  • It will provide them with concrete insights into the workings of multinational companies and big finance as the perpetrators of wars, inequality and social and environmental injustice.
  • It will help them to understand the legal, cultural and political ways to fight international corruption and socio-environmental inequality.


You may apply to be a guest student at SUM. Please follow these instructions.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

A bachelor’s degree. 

Recommended previous knowledge

Specialization equivalent to at least 80 ECTS within subjects from the humanities or social sciences, sustainable development, or equivalent relevant subjects. 


Students must actively take part in all the lectures and seminars unless there are valid grounds for not doing so.

Students must themselves report absence from compulsory activities.


The evaluation of students’ work will be based on 3 days take-home exam requesting a 7 pages’ long essay.

Digital home examination

The home examination is conducted in the digital examination system Inspera.You will need to familiarize yourself with the digital examination arrangements in Inspera.

 Read more about home examinations using Inspera.

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.

Facts about this course

Every spring
Every spring
Teaching language