PUBPOL 654: Science and Technology in International Affairs

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Winter 2006
Credit Hours

This course examines the many ways in which international affairs is intertwined with science and technology, both in theory and in practice. The course proceeds in three sections. first, by surveying in a cross-cutting manner a variety of issues that include economic competitiveness, development, then environment, terrorism, and trade, students explore themes, concepts, and tools that are arguably central to understanding the dynamics of science and technology in the international arena and in foreign policymaking in particular. The course then focuses on international security affairs, broadly defined. Using a case-study approach, the course selectively compares and analyzes the techno-political assumptions, requirements, and workings of contemporary systems of security, such as international non-proliferation regimes, U.S. theater missile defense, border and export controls, and national intelligence in international organizations. In the course's last section, students use concepts and tools assessment in one issue area. The course is multidisciplinary in its scope and is designed to engage students who are interested in the management of international affairs and in international relations more broadly. While the course is for graduate students, no particular expertise in either international affairs or science and technology is assumed as a prerequisite.