Undergraduate training

While STPP does not currently offer any undergraduate programs, below is a list of undergraduate courses around U-M relevant to science and technology policy.

While STPP does not currently offer any undergraduate programs, below is a list of courses around U-M relevant to science and technology policy. Undergraduate students interested in the intersection of science, technology, policy, and society may be interested in the undergraduate minor in science, technology, and society.

Architecture, Urban Planning, and Transportation Policy

  • This undergraduate course is designed to provide students with an overview of the policy and legal implications of land development and use, focusing primarily on the environmental implications of public planning, policy-making, and law at the state and local level. The course is framed around four general topics, each of which will be addressed specifically to environmental issues: the scientific and moral justifications for undertaking private and public land use management; the state and local institutional structures employed for managing land development and use in the U.S., focusing on planning, infrastructure policy, and regulation; the successes and failures of that state and local land management regime and corresponding efforts to reform it; and the ‘wise-use,’ ‘tea party,’ and other popular back-lash responses to land management reforms. Students will learn the substance of the topics described. They will also learn to read and brief legal cases related to land use law, to read and interpret local master plans, and to read and interpret local zoning codes.

Biotechnology and Healthcare Policy

  • When people say “global health,” they usually mean delivering Western medicine in low-resource settings. This assumes that medicine is a universal good. Is it? Or is biomedicine also a “culture” – with values, practices and understandings built in a particular place and time? What are medicine’s ethics, symbols, economies, experiences of the body, and politics? What happens when these things run up against other ways of viewing the world? In this course, through scholarship and popular media, and through the instructor’s experiences as a practicing physician and anthropologist, we will explore mind-bending paradoxes about what we assume to be true, explore aspects of medical practice, and describe why those practices often have unexpected results when they travel.

    From iPhones to intelligence testing to immunizations, technology, science, and medicine permeate our modern lives. In this course, students will learn to think critically about technology, science, and medicine and analyze how they have transformed the world in spectacular and mundane ways. We explore questions such as: How has the development of the medical profession shaped debates about inoculation or the AIDS epidemic? How have culture and politics affected the goals and designs of such technologies as guns, washing machines, and electrical systems? How have science, technology, and politics interacted in debates over climate change? And, ultimately, how should we manage the tension between popular democracy and technical expertise?

    This course will explore social aspects of health, illness, and the health care system in the United States. We will begin with a general overview of what a sociological perspective of medicine actually means. We will then focus on various forms of inequality, particularly with respect to race, gender and class, before moving on to study the medical profession. We will also touch on controversial topics such as medical experimentation, the role of the patient, and ethical medical decision-making. This class will give you a new perspective on medicine to see it not only as a practice for making sick bodies well, but also for maintaining social control, establishing ideas of human worth, and even a new kind of citizenship.

Business Policy

  • The Economics of Sustainability

Energy and Environmental Policy

  • This course introduces students to global environmental politics, justice and development. This course will explore environmental issues around the world and the relatedness of nature to politics, development and culture. We will address historically unique social form that presents special challenges to our understanding of environmental politics, gender, race and culture by looking at case studies from around the world. Among the questions that we will examine are the following: How have local and global histories, memories, practices, values, gender, race and identities that derive from our understanding of politics intersect with nature? Are there environmental issues that are also issues of race, class and gender? For example, are there particular forms of knowledge and subjectivity that intersect or interact with race and gender difference, or ideas about civilization and primitivity that could be seen as distinctive instruments of environmental rule?

    This course is an advanced offering on environmental politics and the environmental policy-making process. The course considers both processes of policy formation and implementation, placing particular emphasis on the development of alternatives to conventional regulatory practices at federal, state, and local levels of government.

    Public policy embodies an assortment of value systems. While individual value systems express coherent, consistent approaches, public policy expresses an amalgam of values, with corresponding decrease in coherence/consistency. This course explores the relationships between various environmental values and public policy through analysis of policy issues at local, state, and national levels. Students in this course reflect on and refine their own approach to environmental ethics through a close examination of a set of current environmental issues. They develop skills in detecting the value systems presently underlying public policy as expressed in laws, administrative regulations, and government action. Discussion and presentations by participants and by outside speakers who are professionals in the field will give insight into the challenges of meeting stakeholder expectations and forging a coherent, effective approach to environmental challenges. Issues such as water protection/preservation in the Great Lakes Basin, the sustainability and survivability of endangered species, the management of wildlife in rural, suburban, and urban areas, and formulation of energy policy will provide the basis for investigation.

General Science and Technology Policy

  • Projects based on environmental sustainability. Project based teamwork. Life Cycle Analysis (LCA). Techno-Economic Analysis (TEA). Engineering economics. Environmental impact with emphasis on CO2 utilization. Identification of key technology drivers to reduce cost and environment impact. Written and oral presentations.

Information/Communication Technology Policy

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