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PHIL 175B. Philosophy of Public Policy. 4 Units.

From healthcare to parliamentary reforms to educational policies, social and public policies are underpinned by normative justifications - that is by different conceptions of what is right, wrong or required by justice. By analyzing these assumptions and justifications, we can in turn challenge the policies in question - asking: Is workfare ever justified? What is wrong with racial profiling? When (if ever) is compulsory voting justified? Should children have the right to vote? Does affirmative action promote equality? Should freedom of expression ever be restricted? What are the duties of citizens of affluent countries toward asylum seekers and economic migrants? Do we have a right to privacy?nnThe course aims to train students in the normative analysis of public policies. At the end of this class, students should be able to critically examine diverse policy proposals from the perspective of ethics, moral and political philosophy. Students will be introduced to a broad range of normative approaches to politics, and the seminars will be organized around debates and small-group exercises to train students in the concrete ways in which one argues normatively. Through concrete and important policy examples each week, students will be introduced to the main debates in moral and political theory.nnThere are no prerequisites. Undergraduates and graduates from all departments are welcome to attend. After taking this class, students will be prepared to take more advanced classes in ethics, political theory, as well as moral and political philosophy. They will have developed competences in the normative analysis of public policy and they will be able to deploy those competences in other ethics classes.
Same as: ETHICSOC 75X, PHIL 275B