The study of world economy must be based on the identification of the essential elements that both define and identify the socioeconomic reality that we aim to analyse. The international economy is conceived as an interdependent system in which the main dynamism arises from the capitalistic center although its effects are quickly spread today all over the world. Therefore, we must begin identifying the structural features of capitalism and defining their international economic relations and conceptualizing the development of these relations.
Once this step is taken and since the economic reality under study is composed of innumerable facts, objects and relationships, some prior selection criteria is required. Hence, the analysis begins with the developed capitalist economies, then focus on the periphery of the system and subsequently extended itself to the field of international economic relations.
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