Courses

Spring 2018 Offerings

IAFF 6142 Technology Creation/Diffusion

Nicholas Vonortas 

The purpose of this course is to examine the factors that underlie the creation of new technologies and  their diffusion throughout the economy. The discussion will cover issues of interest to new technology pro‐ ducers and/or users in the private business sector, universities and government. Although the main focus will be the prevailing environment in developed market economies, developing countries will be dealt with to some extent. We will examine in some depth important recent global developments in technology creation and dissemination and their historical overlaps. And, of course, we will address the implications for policy.

IAFF 6146: Space Law

Henry Hertzfeld 

Space activities, by the nature of their unique characteristics, operate in an international and global environ‐ ment. Nearly 50 years have elapsed since beginning of human activity in space. A body of law has evolved that deals with space activity. The foundations of these international legal principles are found in five treaties developed within the framework of the United Nations during the late 1960s. They reflect the governmental nature of space programs of that era. Many nations participating in space activities also have domestic laws that regulate and administer the activities of their citizens who now participate in the growing commercial environment of space.
This course will review the underlying principles of international space law. The emphasis will be on issues that will be of concern in the future as space activity moves into the commercial world. However, many technologies and uses of space may encounter conflicts between civil and defense concerns. Such legal is‐ sues include liability for accidents, registration of space objects, non‐proliferation, and transparency. The course will also review domestic (primarily U.S.) space law and the many regulatory agencies that are involved in licensing and approving commercial space activities.
Finally, looking a bit further into the future, there are numerous legal uncertainties that must be resolved to lower investment risks if private space activities are to be funded, built, and operated. These issues include: the relationship between air law and space law, space traffic control, environmental concerns, licensing and financial responsibility, and international over‐flight and landing considerations.

IAFF 6151 Environmental Policy

This seminar course examines environmental policy and politics from an international perspective, with a particular emphasis on the role of science and technology and policy. The course will introduce students to the fundamentals of international environmental policymaking processes, such as key policy paradigms, actors, and institutions; familiarize students with critical issue areas including climate change, ozone depletion, international resource conservation, and others; and examine environmental policymaking as it relates to other key international goals like development, e.g. through the Millennium Development Goals.

IAFF 6153 Science, Technology, and National Security

A broad, complex, and multidimensional set of factors contribute to the ability of states to use science and technology to advance their national security.  This course examines how effectively states, and the United States in particular, develop policies designed to translate science and technology into strategic advantage.  To assess these factors, the course addresses a range of issues including innovation, revolutions in military affairs, globalization and international economic integration, technology transfer and export controls, changing global security dynamics, and the impact of emerging technologies on defense industries and military power.

There is general agreement on the fundamental contributions of science and technology to national security but the field of security studies still lacks a coherent and foundational body of literature that addresses these interrelationships in a systematic and comprehensive way.  Our analysis begins with the interwar period, considering how effectively the great powers adapted to rapidly changing technology and assessing analytical frameworks for addressing these issues.  The course subsequently addresses many of the key historic and current science, technology, and national security policy issues including science and technology in World War II, developing thermonuclear weapons, missile and satellite technology, airpower, counterproliferation, robotics, cyberpower, and governance of science and technology.  Because there is no accepted canon of literature in this field, your readings for this course are quite wide-ranging and will require your focused attention and active engagement to synthesize.

IAFF 6158 Cybersecurity

This course will provide an overview of current issues in the cyber realm,  focusing on policy and conflict from a U.S. and international perspective.  We will begin with an understanding of the power inherent in cyberspace and consider the policy issues facing the civilian, military, intelligence and private business sectors in dealing with offensive and defensive cyber activity.  Through the use of case studies, we will examine previous and ongoing cyber conflicts to understand their impacts on international relations.  We will analyze the roles of several different types of cyber actors including state actors, non-state actors such as criminal and terror groups and private sector/business responses.  This course will also examine the issue of cyber deterrence, and the unique aspects of offensive and defensive cyber activities by all cyber actors.  Technical background is not required and basic aspects of cyber operations will be discussed as part of the introductory class sessions.

IAFF 6158 Geospatial Law and Policy

IAFF 6158 Energy Policy

Canay Ozden-Schilling

This course will contextualize energy policy within historical and contemporary developments in politics, economics, public perception, safety, and technology. The class will survey debates over historical and future energy transitions, including the switch to renewables and the use of unconventional energy sources. Students will develop skills to engage critically with different policy perspectives that inform energy supply and consumption.

IAFF 6158 Economics of Space

IAFF 6159 ISTP Capstone

Kei Koizumi

Fall 2017 Offerings

IAFF 6158.13 Renewable Energy in a Decarbonizing World

Nina Kelsey

This course will provide an overview of current issues in the cyber realm,  focusing on policy and conflict from a U.S. and international perspective.  We will begin with an understanding of the power inherent in cyberspace and consider the policy issues facing the civilian, military, intelligence and private business sectors in dealing with offensive and defensive cyber activity.  Through the use of case studies, we will examine previous and ongoing cyber conflicts to understand their impacts on international relations.  We will analyze the roles of several different types of cyber actors including state actors, non-state actors such as criminal and terror groups and private sector/business responses.  This course will also examine the issue of cyber deterrence, and the unique aspects of offensive and defensive cyber activities by all cyber actors.  Technical background is not required and basic aspects of cyber operations will be discussed as part of the introductory class sessions.

IAFF 6158.12 Cybersecurity

Mark Duke

This course will provide an overview of current issues in the cyber realm,  focusing on policy and conflict from a U.S. and international perspective.  We will begin with an understanding of the power inherent in cyberspace and consider the policy issues facing the civilian, military, intelligence and private business sectors in dealing with offensive and defensive cyber activity.  Through the use of case studies, we will examine previous and ongoing cyber conflicts to understand their impacts on international relations.  We will analyze the roles of several different types of cyber actors including state actors, non-state actors such as criminal and terror groups and private sector/business responses.  This course will also examine the issue of cyber deterrence, and the unique aspects of offensive and defensive cyber activities by all cyber actors.  Technical background is not required and basic aspects of cyber operations will be discussed as part of the introductory class sessions.

 

IAFF 6158.11  Science, Tech, and Policy Analysis

Allison Macfarlane

Many of the most important and salient policy decisions taken by governments are those that involve science or technology.  Climate change, dangers posed by environmental hazards such as DDT and dioxin, the debate over immunization against diseases such as measles, mumps, and rubella, the decisions involving nuclear weapons are policy issues that involve science and technology to a great degree.  How policymakers use science to make decisions, how policy affects science and technology, how risk and uncertainty are accounted for (or not) in decision-making, whether policy decisions involving science and technology should be democratized, and how the public impacts science policy decisions are all topics that will be covered in this course.  Science and Technology Policy Analysis will provide a grounding in the field of science and technology policy and will be underpinned by the sociology of science and technology.  The course will take an international perspective on issues and provide opportunities for comparative analysis.   A technical background is not required but will enhance one’s understanding.

 

 

IAFF 6148 Space and National Security

Peter Hays

Recent military operations in Libya, Afghanistan, and Iraq indicate space capabilities have become a foundational enabler of most U.S. military actions and an increasingly important component of U.S. national security.  Worldwide, there is growing recognition and focus on the broad and ubiquitous contributions space capabilities make to global prosperity and security.  The 2001 Space Commission Report found that because U.S. military and economic security has become so dependent on space capabilities, the nation could face a “space Pearl Harbor.”  The U.S. National Space Policy from October 2006 stated: “In this new century, those who effectively utilize space will enjoy added prosperity and security and will hold a substantial advantage over those who do not.  Freedom of action in space is as important to the United States as air power and sea power.”  And the current National Space Policy released in June 2010 indicates: “Space systems allow people and governments around the world to see with clarity, communicate with certainty, navigate with accuracy, and operate with assurance.”

This course will look at various events and developments around the world that have influenced the ways that U.S must reassess its actions relating to employment of space capabilities and improvements of mission assurance in a complex and fragile environment. Students will also look at new space security strategy approaches including strengthening deterrence, developing and deploying robust offensive and defensive counter space capabilities, leveraging state-of-the-world commercial and international capabilities, rebalancing multi-domain options and modernization priorities, and developing and deploying space architectures with improved resilience, defensive operations, and reconstitution capabilities. Finally, this course will foster a dialogue concerned with current international tensions and consequently the need and related consequences of employing space control capabilities. This course examines these and other issues associated with U.S. strategy, policy, management, and organization for the national security uses of space.

 

 

IAFF 6145 U.S. Space Policy

Scott Pace

This course is an examination of the origins, evolution, current status, and future prospects of U.S. space policies and programs. It will cover the U.S. government’s civilian, military, and national security space programs and the space activities of the U.S. private sector, and the interactions among these four sectors of U.S. space activity. This examination will be cast in the context of the space activities of other countries, and of international cooperation and competition in space. The goal of the course is to give the student an exposure to the policy debates and decisions that have shaped U.S. efforts in space to date, and to the policy issues that must be addressed in order to determine the future goals, content, pace, and organization of U.S. space activities, both public and private.

IAFF 6141 International Science and Tech Cornerstone

Nicholas Vonortas

This course provides a comprehensive overview of the policy issues related to the support, use, management, and regulation of science and technology. It addresses U.S. domestic as well as international issues, is concerned with governmental policies as well as non-governmental, and it is focused on both the economics and politics of science and technology issues. In today’s world, scientific discoveries and technological innovations influence almost every aspect of human existence. The effects of many of these innovations influence almost every aspect of human existence. Many changes induced by these innovations have been extremely positive, bringing advances in health, communications, material wealth, and quality of life. At the same time, science and technology have helped create apparently intractable problems, including new risks to human health, pollution of the natural environment, and the existence of weapons capable of mass destruction. Given all these impacts, making effective and fair decisions regarding technologically complex issues is one of the most challenging tasks of modern governance. Especially demanding is policy-making for international economic competition, which is increasingly defined in terms of technological competence. The diffusion of centers of technological excellence around the world and the progressive convergence of local markets in terms of consumer tastes and preferences have obliged economic agents to adopt a global outlook; not only do firms compete internationally but they also depend on each other’s technological, financial, and marking strengths to stay afloat. In this course, we examine a number of important characteristics of the new international environment that are directly related to the technological competence of firms and of nations as well.

Public Syllabus Can Be Viewed Here

 

Econ 6255 Economics of Technological Change and Innovation

Nicholas Vonortas

The course makes extensive use of case study material to underline the differences between technologies, industries, and organizations involved in scientific and technological advance, including companies, universities, and government agencies. The discussion flags the currently “hot” topics of research internationally and assists in the delineation of topics for further in-depth research by the students.

Public Syllabus Can Be Viewed Here

IAFF 6118 Applied Qualitative Methods

Hugh Gusterson

This class introduces students to the main methods of qualitative research: interviewing, taking oral histories, running focus groups, doing surveys, and participant observation. Students will also discuss the ethics of qualitative research, looking at some studies that have been criticized as unethical (the infamous Stanford prison experiment, an undercover study of gay sexual practices, and a deceptive study of undergraduate dorm culture, for example).  Students will spend part of the semester conducting their own research projects, which they will present to the class.  Students will learn about qualitative research through “how-to” readings, reflective articles by practitioners, guest presentations, and through practicing the techniques we read about.  From time to time the instructor will share his own research materials and discuss dilemmas he faced in his research.

 

The class is taught by Hugh Gusterson, an anthropologist who has thirty years of experience with qualitative methods.  He has conducted research on the culture of nuclear weapons scientists in the U.S. and Russia; on social protest movements in both countries; on government employees’ experience with lie-detection technology, and on teenage drinking.  Most recently he was part of a research group investigating the role of anthropology in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.