Thinking in Systems (7115): Virtually every public policy has causes and consequences beyond those that are intended or immediately visible. This is true of criminal law policies that use algorithmic predictions of flight before trial; environmental policies involving greenhouse gas emissions and conventional pollutants; and social and health policies that address homelessness, institutional racism, and the distribution of Covid vaccines, to name just a few examples. The causes of the problems that these policies seek to address are complex. As a result, these policies often fail and sometimes have unintended adverse consequences. "Systems thinking" is a framework that describes the web of associations in which such policies reside, with the goals of understanding the multiple causes of problems and designing policies that lead to stable, positive changes. Thinking in systems and learning to map systems, are core skills for policy makers. After several introductory classes devoted to learning these concepts and learning how to use the web-based systems mapping tool, Kumu, students will work on systems design projects of their choice. Elements used in grading: Attendance, Projects, Final Paper. CONSENT APPLICATION: To apply for this course, students must complete and submit a Consent Application Form available on the SLS website (https://law.stanford.edu/education/courses/consent-of-instructor-forms/). See Consent Application Form for instructions and submission deadline.
2022-2023 AutumnSchedule No Longer Available