|Instructor||Prof. Malte Ziewitz|
|Location||Uris Hall G88|
|Cross‑listed as||SOC 2760|
Traffic lights, elevators, and recycling bins seem rather boring and irrelevant. Yet, while not usually on our minds when thinking about governance and regulation, these seemingly mundane technologies are important features of our lives. This course will take a closer look at everyday solutions to public problems. Combining hands-on exercises with readings from STS, sociology, and politics, we shall explore the role of everyday devices and technologies in establishing, maintaining, and disrupting social order:
Working through these questions will be particularly useful for students interested in social theory, design, and public policy.
This is a laboratory class. We will not only discuss readings and ideas, but also engage in hands-on observation and analysis. This may include:
Studying these phenomena first-hand will help us understand, reflect upon, and possibly transform social science concepts where they matter most. This will be particularly useful for students interested in sociology, design, and public policy.
No specific coursework required, except for a willingness to engage in hands-on exercises inside and outside the classroom. You should be able to read challenging texts carefully and critically and to write effective, coherent arguments.
As we will be working with pictures, notes, and video, I recommend that you bring your laptop to class. If available, you should also bring a smartphone or digital camera.