Academics

Science and technology issues are critical to our quality of life, environmental health, international competitiveness, and national security. Most universities place their science and technology policy programs within schools of public policy or engineering. At the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs, we offer a Master of Arts in International Science and Technology Policy (ISTP) that allows these important issues to be placed in a global context. Our students receive more than just a classroom education in policy analysis, research methods, and issues in science and technology; they also learn about the global impacts of these policies, and through internships and job opportunities can put them into practice in the Washington, DC science and technology community.

What’s International Science and Technology Policy really all about? Who can better speak to the question than former Assistant Director for Federal Research and Development and Senior Advisor to the Director for the National Science and Technology Council at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (and ISTP alum!) Kei Koizumi. Watchi his Bromley Event keynote lecture and Q&A to discover more.

Prospective students interested in International Science and Technology Policy? Learn more about the Elliott School’s ISTP programs:

About the Elliott School

The George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs is a top school in international affairs and the largest school of international affairs in the United States. Located in the heart of Washington, DC its mission is to educate the next generation of international leaders, conduct research that advances understanding of important global issues, and engage the policy community in the United States and around the world.

Are these programs for you?

Our students study energy and environmental policy, information technology and the Internet, technology innovation and space policy, security and international development, and beyond. Our programs gives students the tools and training to understand the influence of science, technology, and innovation on pressing societal issues and also the skills to apply their knowledge in almost any setting. Our flexible curriculum combines required courses with electives tailored to meet each student’s individual professional goals and intellectual interests. Classes meet in the evenings, Monday through Thursday, accommodating the busy schedules of working professionals and allowing students to pursue daytime internships or employment in government, the private sector, non-profits, and international organizations in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

What will you study? Commonly offered courses include:

FALL SEMESTER

IAFF 6141 International Science & Technology Policy Cornerstone | Full Syllabus Available Here

This course provides a comprehensive overview of the policy issues related to the support, use, management, and regulation of science and technology. It addresses US domestic as well as international issues, is concerned with governmental policies as well as non-governmental decisions, and it is focused on both the economics and politics of science and technology issues.

Taught by Professor Nicholas Vonortas

IAFF 6143 Science and Technology Policy Analysis

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 decisions involving nuclear weapons are policy issues that involve science and technology to a great degree. This course will offer an opportunity to ask probing questions about science and technology policy. 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. The course will take an international perspective on issues and provide opportunities for comparative analysis.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Anthony Eames

IAFF 6145 U.S. Space Policy

This course will address international space policy issues facing the United States and place them in context with broader technological advances and the changing strategic environment. The course will address current bureaucratic and regulatory issues facing U.S. space programs with regard to dual-use technologies, including export controls, spectrum management, and licensing of commercial remote sensing systems. Conflicts over dual-use technologies, such as space launch, remote sensing, satellite navigation, and communications, will be examined for their implications for a range of national interests. The course will also address strategic choices facing other nations in space activities, including dependence on U.S., European, and Russian space capabilities, developing indigenous space programs, and use of commercial space capabilities.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Dana Johnson

IAFF 6148 Space 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 a strategic advantage. To assess this issue the course addresses a range of factors 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. Major themes addressed throughout the course would form parts of an integrative framework for understanding the interplay between science, technology, and national security policy.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Peter Hays

ECON 6255.10 / IAFF 6158.80 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy – Economics of Technological Change | Full Syllabus Available Here

This course provides an overview of important issues related to technological change that have attracted the attention of economists up to the present time. Among all social sciences, economics may be argued to have taken the longest and broadest interest in technological advancement and innovation. Examples of topics discussed include: technology markets, Schumpeterian hypotheses, market concentration and firm size as factors of technological innovation, expenditures in research and development, private and social returns to R&D, technological change and industry entry/exit, intellectual property rights, measurement of technology and innovation, Industry 4.0, Internet of Things, innovation in service sectors.

Taught by Professor Nicholas Vonortas

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy – Energy Policy

Energy supply, demand, and environmental impacts are among the most significant issues of the 21st century.  This course will provide students with the necessary grounding to understand and contribute to debates on energy policy.  The first half of the class will provide a background in fundamentals such as energy resource concepts and energy production technologies.  The balance of the class will focus on energy and environmental policy development and current issues.

Taught by Assistant Professor Nina Kelsey

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy – NonProliferation Strategies and Artificial Intelligence

The objective of this class is to explicate the mechanisms underlying the non-proliferation framework created in the aftermath of World War II and assess whether those mechanisms would work if similar non-proliferation frameworks were created to deal with emerging technologies, particularly artificial intelligence.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Carol Kuntz

IAFF 3190 Space Policy

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.

Taught by Professor of the Practice of International Affairs Scott Pace

 

SPRING SEMESTER

IAFF 6142 Technology Creation and Diffusion

The purpose of this course is to examine the factors that underlie the creation of new technologies, their translation into innovations, and their dissemination throughout the economy. The discussion will cover issues of interest to new technology producers and users in the private business sector, universities and government. The main focus of the discussion will be the prevailing environment in developed market economies and emerging economies.

Taught by Professor Nicholas Vonortas

IAFF 6146 Space Law

This course examines the underlying principles of international space law, with emphasis on issues arising from the increasing use of space for exploration, commerce, and security.

Taught by Research Professor Henry Hertzfeld

IAFF 6151 Environmental Policy

This course examines the public policies designed to protect the human and physical environment. It focuses on the ways science and technology can simultaneously create new environmental problems and contribute to their mitigation and prevention.

Taught by Assistant Professor Nina Kelsey

IAFF 6153 Science, Technology, and National Security

This course examines the contributions of science and technology to U.S. security in military, intelligence, and homeland security activities.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Peter Hays

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy – Cybersecurity

This course will focus on the transnational impact of non-state actors on international policy and security. We will analyze different types of actors, from transnational criminal organizations to NGOs to terrorist groups primarily through case studies. Students will consider the interaction of non-state actors with state actors, evaluating impacts on sovereignty and governance worldwide.

Taught by Adjunct Professor Joshua Work

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy: Issues in U.S. Space Policy

This course will address international space policy issues facing the United States and place them in context with broader technological advances and the changing strategic environment. The course will address current bureaucratic and regulatory issues facing U.S. space programs with regard to dualuse technologies, including export controls, spectrum management, and licensing of commercial remote sensing systems.

Taught by Professor of the Practice of International Affairs Scott Pace

IAFF 6158 Special Topics in International Science and Technology Policy – Space Economics

This course is aimed at understanding the economic issues and analytical tools that non-economists working in policy positions should know in order to be able to evaluate economic analyses and make informed and balanced judgments on economic aspects of space ventures.

Taught by Research Professor Henry Hertzfeld

For more information on course syllabi, please visit the GWU Syllabus Bank.

Contact:

1957 E St NW, Suite 403

Washington, DC 20052

Phone: (202) 994-7292

Email: iistp@gwu.edu

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