Spring 2019 - 59990 - PA 383G - Policy Making in a Global Age | LBJ School of Public Affairs | The University of Texas at Austin

Spring 2019 - 59990 - PA 383G - Policy Making in a Global Age

Policymaking in the Global Age


The instructor will lead the class sessions and will be available for consultation on Mondays (10:30 am to 01:30 pm). On request, consultations can be held on other days and times with prior arrangement. Students are encouraged to consult and discuss any concerns with the instructor.


Course Description

The process of policy making, either by cautious design or when induced by a crisis, is highly nonlinear. Many variables impact the process, and in almost all instances a number of these variables are unknown. Additionally, there are differences in how a particular phenomenon, technology or piece of evidence is perceived by various parties involved in the policy-making process. This experience is true across states and areas of policy specialization. The goal of this course is to explore the paradigm of policymaking using examples from national security policy. For instance, how does national security policymaking occur in the United States? In particular, this course will examine how emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), cyber weapons, CRISPR gene editing techniques, low-cost, high-performance satellite technologies, advanced maneuvering missiles, modernized nuclear weapons, etc. are handled through the current national security policy-making process in the United States. The course will examine both the domestic interest groups and foreign actors (allied and adversarial) that influence American choices in its national security policy-making process. The course will be structured to help students not only to analyze but also to develop policy recommendations.

Reading load: On average, the readings for each week will involve between 175 to 200 pages. Readings will include a combination of theoretical and policy-relevant publications.


Written Assignments and Grading

Grades in the course will be calculated as follows:

First Memo 25%

Second Memo 25%

Final Integrative Memo 30%

In-Class Weekly Presentation on Assigned Readings 15%

Class Participation 5%

Letter grades are decided at the end of the semester, based on the cumulative grades in the course.

More details on the memo and presentations will follow.

M 2:00PM to 5:00PM
SRH 3.312/3.360