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1 - 10 of 324 results for: POLISCI

POLISCI 1: The Science of Politics

Why do countries go to war? How can we explain problems such as poverty, inequality, and pollution? What can be done to improve political representation in the United States and other countries? We will use scientific methods to answer these and other fundamental questions about politics.
Terms: Win, Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

POLISCI 2: Introduction to American National Government and Politics (AMSTUD 2)

American political institutions (the Presidency, Congress, and the Court) and political processes (the formation of political attitudes and voting) have for some time now been criticized as inadequate to the task of making modern public policy. Against the backdrop of American culture and political history we examine how public policy has been and is being made. We use theories from Political Science and Economics to assess the state of the American system and the policy making process. We use case studies and lectures to analyze contemporary issues including environmental policy, taxes and spending , gun control , economic growth and inequality and mobility. In some of these issue areas we use comparative data from other countries to see how the U.S. is doing relative to other countries. In addition to class room lecture and discussion, student groups are formed to analyze policy issues of relevance to them. (This course has merged with Political Science 123/PubPol 101)
Terms: not given this year | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

POLISCI 11N: The Rwandan Genocide

Preference to freshmen. In 1994, more than 800,000 Tutsi and moderate Hutu Rwandans were killed in the most rapid genocide in history. What could bring humans to carry out such violence? Could it have been prevented? Why did no major power intervene to stop the killing? Should the U.N. be held accountable? What were the consequences for Central Africa? How have international actors respond to the challenges of reconstructing Rwanda? What happened to the perpetrators? Sources include scholarly and journalistic accounts.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-ED, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

POLISCI 12N: Climate Change and Conflict: Will Warming Lead to Warring?

Policymakers and scholars are increasingly interested in whether climate change and its associated effects could contribute to the risk of violent conflict within and between countries. Will drought and rising temperatures lead to struggles over a dwindling supply of agricultural land? Will shortages of fresh water cause growing tension over access to rivers and lakes? Will rising sea levels cause mass migration from coastal areas, bringing people into conflict? Will social unrest arising from such stresses lead to violent efforts to topple governments or spill over across borders? In this seminar, we explore such questions as: How could the expected effects of climate change make civil or international conflicts more likely? What evidence is there that environmental factors contribute to violent conflicts, historically and today? What regions or countries are most at risk from these challenges, and why? Answering these questions requires that we not only think about the human and soci more »
Policymakers and scholars are increasingly interested in whether climate change and its associated effects could contribute to the risk of violent conflict within and between countries. Will drought and rising temperatures lead to struggles over a dwindling supply of agricultural land? Will shortages of fresh water cause growing tension over access to rivers and lakes? Will rising sea levels cause mass migration from coastal areas, bringing people into conflict? Will social unrest arising from such stresses lead to violent efforts to topple governments or spill over across borders? In this seminar, we explore such questions as: How could the expected effects of climate change make civil or international conflicts more likely? What evidence is there that environmental factors contribute to violent conflicts, historically and today? What regions or countries are most at risk from these challenges, and why? Answering these questions requires that we not only think about the human and social impacts of climate change but also ask basic questions about what causes political violence within and between countries and how we can assess the contribution of different risk factors. Assignments will encourage students to learn more about the conflict risks in countries that interest them and to gain familiarity with some of the methods that political scientists use to explore these issues systematically. The connection between climate and conflict is relatively new area of inquiry, without many settled answers, so this seminar presents an opportunity to explore what we know, what we do not yet know, and what we can do to further our understanding of this issue going forward.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 3 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

POLISCI 14SC: Water and Power in the Pacific Northwest: The Columbia River (CEE 17SC, EARTHSYS 16SC, ENERGY 12SC)

This seminar will explore the nature of and coupling between water and energy resources in the Pacific Northwest, using the Columbia River as our case study. We will explore the hydrologic, meteorologic, and geologic basis of water and energy resources, and the practical, social, environmental, economic, and political issues surrounding their development in the West. The Columbia River and its watershed provide a revealing prototype for examining these issues. A transnational, multi-state river with the largest residual populations of anadromous salmonids in the continental US, it provides a substantial fraction of the electrical energy produced in the Northwest (the Grand Coulee dam powerhouse on the Columbia is the largest-capacity hydropower facility in the US), it is a major bulk commodity transportation link to the interior West via its barge navigation system, it provides the water diversions supporting a large area of irrigated agriculture in Washington and Idaho, and its watershed is home to significant sources of solar and wind energy. We will use the Columbia to study water and energy resources, and especially their coupling, in the context of rapid climate change, ecosystem impacts, economics, and public policy. We will begin with a week of classroom study and discussion on campus, preparing for the field portion of the seminar. We will then travel to the Columbia basin, spending approximately 10 days visiting a number of water and energy facilities across the watershed, e.g., solar, wind, and natural gas power plants; dams and reservoirs with their powerhouses, fish passage facilities, navigation locks, and flood-mitigation systems; an irrigation project; operation centers; and offices of regulatory agencies. We will meet with relevant policy experts and public officials, along with some of the stakeholders in the basin. Over the summer students will be responsible for assigned readings from several sources, including monographs, online materials, and recent news articles. During the trip, students will work in small groups to analyze and assess one aspect of the coupling between water and energy resources in the Northwest. The seminar will culminate in presentations on these analyses. Travel expenses during the seminar will be provided (except incidentals) by the Bill Lane Center for the American West and Sophomore College.
Terms: Sum | Units: 2 | Grading: Satisfactory/No Credit

POLISCI 18N: Civil War and International Politics: Syria in Context

How and why do civil wars start, drag on, and end? What does focus of post-Cold War U.S. foreign policy on countries torn apart by civil war tell us about contemporary international relations? We consider these and related questions, with the conflict in Syria as our main case study.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

POLISCI 18SC: The Federal Government and the West

Historical development and current status of the relationship between the U.S. federal government and the American West. Land ownership, natural resource management, agriculture, water, energy, and environmental quality.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 2 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

POLISCI 19N: Politics of Energy Efficiency

We will examine the political context of energy efficiency and climate change. Why are some countries, such as Japan and France, able to achieve high levels of energy efficiency, while others, such as the United States and Australia, struggle to do so? What political factors faciliate or impede energy efficiency policies? Why is international cooperation on climate change so difficult?
Terms: not given this year | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

POLISCI 22SC: The Face of Battle

Our understanding of warfare often derives from the lofty perspective of political leaders and generals: what were their objectives and what strategies were developed to meet them? This top-down perspective slights the experience of the actual combatants and non-combatants caught in the crossfire. This course focuses on the complexity of the process by which strategy is translated into tactical decisions by the officers and foot soldiers on the field of battle. We will review theories about civil-military relations and the nature of modern warfare and then visit Washington DC to discuss strategy and politics with current and former policy makers. We will also study two important battles in American history: Gettysburg (July 1863) and the Battle of Little Bighorn (June 1876). We will travel to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and the Little Bighorn battlefield in Montana. The course's battlefield tours are based on the "staff rides" developed by the Prussian Army in the mid-1800s and employed by the U.S. Army since the early 1900s. While at Stanford, students will conduct extensive research on individual participants at Gettysburg and Little Bighorn. Then, as we walk through the battlefield sites, students will brief the group on their subjects' experience of battle and on why they made the decisions they did during the conflict. Why did Lt. General Longstreet oppose the Confederate attack on the Union Army at Gettysburg? What was the experience of a military surgeon on a Civil War battlefield? Why did Custer divide his 7th Cavalry troops as they approached the Little Bighorn River? What was the role of Lakota Sioux women after a battle? Travel will be provided and paid by Sophomore College (except incidentals) and is made possible by the support of the Center for International Security and Cooperation (CISAC). The course is open to students from a range of disciplines; an interest in the topic is the only prerequisite.
Terms: Sum | Units: 2 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

POLISCI 23Q: Analyzing the 2016 Elections

the seminar will normally meet for two hours, but after three seminars there will be lab sessions to acquaint students with basic quantitative methods and major social science databases. After every election the commentariat promulgates a story line to explain the results. Typically later analysis shows the media story line to be wrong (eg. "values voters" in 2004). Participants in this seminar will analyze the results of the 2016 elections. The seminar is about ANALYSIS, not ideology. Some familiarity with quantitative methods is a prerequisite.
Terms: Win | Units: 3 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Fiorina, M. (PI)
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