This course is designed to introduce the historical case studies of critical decision-making over the development and use of nuclear weapons and technology, methods and theories of Science and Technology Studies (STS) and management of technology (MOT) by examining major cases of science and technology policy involving innovative technology and its impacts on the human being, with focus on the research and development (R&D) decision-making process and its consequence.
This course will give students an understanding of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and the global efforts to control their spread and reduce their dangers, by covering policy tools from treaties and diplomacy to sanctions and war.
Topics include: the Manhattan Project, atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Cuban missile crisis, nuclear arms race during the Cold War, weapons of mass destruction (WMD) proliferation, North Korean and Iranian nuclear crises, missile defence, arms control & nuclear non-proliferation, and nuclear energy. Some policy issues, such as nuclear arms control and disarmament, nuclear deterrence, nuclear diplomacy and nuclear energy, are also included.
Upon completion of the course, students are expected to be able to:
• Acquire the basic concepts and understanding of the topics covered in this course thorough literature reading;
• Develop capabilities of analyzing the historical and current cases of critical decision-making over the development and use of nuclear weapons;
• Demonstrate capabilities of discussing the complexity of specific nuclear policy issues through critical thinking and essay work.
science & technology (S&T), research & development (R&D), decision-making, policy analysis, defense & security, nuclear non-proliferation, arms control & disarmament
|✔ Specialist skills||✔ Intercultural skills||✔ Communication skills||✔ Critical thinking skills||✔ Practical and/or problem-solving skills|
This course consists of obligatory lectures and seminars. Each student is required to read the assigned readings and come prepared to discuss them. Active participation, oral presentation and essay work are required to pass the course. Basic knowledge of international politics is preferable for effective participation. The evaluation is based on the followings:
• Regular class attendance and active participation in discussion: 50%
• Oral presentation of each student’s independent study 20%
• Essay work (final paper) 30%
|Course schedule||Required learning|
|Class 1||Introduction: Why weapons of mass destruction (WMD) matter?||Introduction|
|Class 2||The genesis of weapons of mass destruction: the Manhattan Project and Decision-making of the use of WMD re-examined||The Manhattan Project: Developing the Atomic bomb|
|Class 3||Managing WMDs: Nuclear arms race and arms control during the Cold War||The Cold War nuclear arms race, nuclear deterrence doctrine and strategy|
|Class 4||Nuclear Proliferation: the cases of North Korea, India, Pakistan, Israel, etc.||Nuclear weapons proliferation problems|
|Class 5||Terrorism with the use of WMD, and the evolving threat of nuclear terrorism||Risk of nuclear terrorism|
|Class 6||Obstacles to nuclear security and nuclear security threats; Risk-informed approaches to nuclear security||Obstacles to nuclear security and nuclear security threats; Risk-informed approaches to nuclear security|
|Class 7||Oral presentation of students’ independent studies and Wrap-up discussion||Oral presentation of students’ independent studies and Wrap-up discussion|
|Class 8||Oral presentation of students’ independent studies and Wrap-up discussion|
Readings listed in the syllabus (downloadable)
A compendium of articles and book chapters may be included as hand-outs
The evaluation is based on the followings:
• Regular class attendance and active participation: 50%
• Essay work (final paper) with oral presentation: 50% (essay 20% + oral presentation 30%)
To complete with "Science, Technology and Innovation Policy Analysis II" is preferable.