LLM Digital Economy

Postgraduate (1 year full-time)


January 2017, September 2017

Intermediate award: LLM

Please note, we are no longer recruiting for this course for September 2016. We are accepting applications for January 2017 and September 2017.


Become an expert in the legal and policy issues raised by the Digital Economy.

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Full description


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Our LLM Digital Economy will provide you with a masters-level qualification and prepare you for a career in legal practice, as well as other roles that focus on the knowledge and digital economies:

  • legal and business advisers to private companies or NGOs
  • independent consultancy
  • specialist researchers in academic institutions, think-tanks, or private companies

It will also prepare you for further study on a research degree, such as our MPhil / PhD Law.

Modules & assessment

Core modules

  • Business Law in the Global Context
    This module will help you transition from Undergraduate to Masters level study by brushing up on the skills you need as a postgraduate student (effective use of electronic databases, academic writing and referencing) and providing an analytical framework for international trade law that transcends particular jurisdictions to focus on the context in which international business takes place. You’ll examine the need for regulation or international trade and the development of legal frameworks, including organisations like the WTO and the EU, and be expected to demonstrate a systematic and critical awareness of the interrelation of law and business in a global context, as well as advanced scholarship in international trade and business. You’ll be assessed through a group presentation, in which you’ll individually present findings resulting from your personal research. This presentation will be accompanied by a written assignment that will include referencing correctly presented using OSCOLA.
  • Digital Economy
    This core module aims to provide students with an understanding of the legal structures and the regulation of the Digital Economy. The module combines an overview of the regulation of modern communications (including telecommunications, information technology, information) together with aspects of electronic commercial transactions (jurisdiction, electronic copyright, liability of electronic intermediaries). A major emphasis of the course will be on law relating to electronic privacy with an understanding of what we mean by the Open Society and the Knowledge Economy. The module will cover the historical perspectives on the UK Digital Economy and the EU emphasis on promoting a borderless trading economy, the current legal and organisational structure of communications control in the UK and Europe, the role of international law impacting on the communications sector (particularly WTO law), UK and European competition law as it impacts the Digital Economy as well as aspects of IP law that impact on-line transactions, particularly UK and European copyright law. This module develops students' employability skills in a number of ways. In particular, students will develop their ability to analyse complex legal issues and problem solve in order to identify appropriate solutions. You will develop team working skills, time management skills and a sense of responsibility. Students will be encouraged to develop a interdisciplinary understanding of subject areas, since the Digital Economy is a subject by default exposed to competition, trade, regulation of infrastructure (telecommunications) and content (intellectual property). Assessment will be by essay, online assessment and presentation.
  • Legal Research Methods
    This module will give you a critical understanding of research skills, methods and methodology, including surveys, questionnaires, statistical analysis, and interviews, in addition to bibliographical research methods in law. It will also provide you with an understanding of web learning and the ability to access materials both through the University library and from other sources. Most importantly, you will learn to critically examine alternative research methods and evaluate their effectiveness in the study of International Business Law. Further still, you will have the chance to discuss learning and teaching styles, academic expectations and learning strategies. You will be taught through seminars, library sessions and E-learning, giving you a grounding in the various possible research methods. Your assessment will comprise both a presentation and coursework.
  • Major Research Project (LLMs)
    This module will support you in the preparation and submission of the Master's stage project for the LLM International Business Law, LLM International Commercial Law and LLM Digital Economy. You will be assessed through a maximum 15,000-word final thesis.
  • Intellectual Property Law and Social Media
    The Intellectual Property Law & Social Media module has been designed to provide a learning opportunity for students, some of whom may be new to study in an English university setting. This module is designed to enable you to develop a thorough knowledge and understanding of the major areas of the law of information, intellectual property and social media including key concepts and principles and such detailed rules, as are necessary, to illustrate those broad principles as they apply in particular situations. You will gain a sound knowledge and understanding of the law relating to information, intellectual property and social media, suggest solutions to factual problems and apply this knowledge and understanding to the critical analysis of contemporary business and social issues relating to the law of information, intellectual property and social media. In addition to providing a structured outline and an introductory critique of topics and concepts, seminars will be used to consider research methods, relevant case law and statutory material. Seminar groups will focus on selected topics, cases, journal articles and other materials. Particular emphasis is placed on student discussion, application and evaluation of the law as it operates in business and society. The issue of data portability and data protection under new European Directives will be covered as well as the important concepts of Big Data and Cloud Computing. You will also develop skills in research, problem solving, analysis and application. Assessment will be by online assessment, essay and presentation.

Optional modules

  • Globalisation and World Trade
    This module seeks to critically analyse the various factors that impinge on globalisation and trade, and in doing so, aims to provide students with specialised knowledge and understanding of globalisation and the regulation of international trade through the World Trade Organisation. Other areas covered include harmonisation of the law and international development. The module is divided into five separate sections: (a) Globalisation and trade; (b) an introduction to the WTO covered agreements; (c) WTO law and jurisprudence; (d) The WTO in the decade ahead; and (e) The WTO and the developing world. This module will use a learner-centred approach, employing directed reading and resource-based learning. Students are expected to engage in self-managed learning activities and prepare in advance for taught sessions. The module will focus on developing students’ technical knowledge within the context of the political and social issues that surround the World Trade Organisation and international trade. The module contributes to research, analytical and critical thinking skills, and electronic communication skills all of which are transferable skills highly valued by employers. Additionally, the module develops key employability skills such as commercial awareness, decision making and interpersonal skills. Trade law is a subject that gives students knowledge of the international marketplace and the relationship between the state and business and so is particularly valued in careers such as international business and law. Assessment will be by essay and a 'mini-moot'.
  • Competition Law in the International Context
    Knowledge of the legal regulation of competition is a key tool for anyone involved in businesses operating in a global context, therefore the aim of this module will be to help you examine the purposes and theory of competition law and its relationship to economics, including comparison between EU and US anti-trust law. A substantial component of the module will consider the extent to which the law operates to regulate the market behaviour of businesses. This will be put in the context of the growing internationalisation of competition law. Assessment will be by written assessment (80%) and a group presentation (20%).
  • Corporate Governance
    This module will introduce you to the political, economic, cultural, social and legal mechanisms that govern the activities of corporations. You’ll be able to engage in an examination and critical evaluation of corporate governance in a global context, examining its underpinning theories as well as the development and regulation of international governance. You’ll contrast these with recent business scandals and the different intercultural responses to them, also considering the nature, scope and effect of corporate social responsibilities, including environmental. You will learn to resolve ethical problems in the context of governance theory and apply theory to problem-based scenarios, considering the appropriateness of these theories in a business context. You’ll also undertake a comparative analysis between a number of jurisdictions and the approaches being adopted in these jurisdictions reflecting the main schools of thought. Your assessment will comprise written coursework (4,800 words) and a group presentation.
  • Transnational Commercial Law
    This module will develop your understanding of what drives international commercial law and the reasons for harmonisation. It will enable you to examine institutions involved in the harmonisation process, as well as the scope of the harmonisation processes and the major problems and policy issues that must be confronted. You will critically evaluate the success of key international instruments, which you may already have studied in other modules (for example the Vienna Sales Convention), and examine them from a perspective of the need, purpose and success or failure of harmonisation of international commercial law. Your assessment will consist of a 6,000 word essay.


You’ll show your progress through a combination of written essays, problem-solving assignments and presentations.
All students take our core modules, but please note that the availability of optional modules is subject to demand.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

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Whether you aim to work in the creative industries or the social sciences, the legal profession or public service, the Faculty of Arts, Law & Social Sciences will provide you with the skills and knowledge you need for professional life.

Our lively, diverse community and ambitious academic environment will broaden your horizons and help you develop your full potential - many of our courses give you the chance to learn another language, study abroad or undertake work placements as you study.

If you’re interested in art, music, drama or film, check out our packed programme of events. Together with our partners in the creative and cultural industries, we’re always working to enrich the cultural life of the university and the wider community.

Our research is groundbreaking and internationally recognised, with real social impact. We support the Cultures of the Digital Economy Research Institute (CoDE), whose projects include interactive music apps and documenting lifesaving childbirth procedures, as well as nine international research clusters, such as the Centre for Children's Book Studies and the Labour History Research Unit.

In the Research Excellence Framework 2014, six of our subject areas were awarded world-leading status: Law; Art and Design; English Language and Literature, Communication, Cultural and Media Studies; History; Music, Drama, Dance and Performing Arts.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year)


International students, 2016/17 (per year)


UK & EU students, 2017/18 (per year)


International students, 2017/18 (per year)


Entry requirements

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