This course is a philosophical examination of the responsibilities of public policymakers in a democracy. The course asks two questions: (1) What should governments do? (2) What should political actors do? The first question requires consideration of public principles that guide good, just, and legitimate public policy. The second question requires consideration of the many and often competing obligations that should guide political actors inside and outside government, particularly when there is disagreement about what is good, just, and legitimate public policy. Discussions and assignments focus on applications of theoretical concepts from scholarly readings in philosophy and political theory to practical issues of public policy and policymaker responsibility.
Open to non-MPP1 students by permission of instructor only.