The aim of this course is to examine public policy from the point of view of moral and political philosophy. It introduces students to some of the fundamental values that should inform government (e.g. freedom, democracy, responsibility, equality) and explores some of the practical dilemmas for office holders when values come into conflict. Through studying real cases and philosophical examples, the first part of the course inquires into the nature and limits of public authority and the special responsibilities that come with filling a public role. The second part looks at a number of distinctive challenges that morally motivated policy makers will face. Questions will include, inter alia, (a) how to design a just economy and a fair system of taxation, (b) how to conduct ethically in foreign affairs and migration policy, (c) how to respond to populist and other kinds of challenges to democracy.
This course is for 2nd year MIA and MPP students only.