15 655J - Law, Technology, and Public Policy

Prereq: None. Examines the relationship between law and technological change, and the ways in which law, economics, and technological change shape public policy. Addresses how law can be used to influence and guide technological change; responses of the legal system to environmental, safety, social and ethical problems created by new or existing technology; how law and markets interact to limit or encourage technological development; and how law can affect distribution of wealth and social justice. Covers climate change; genetic engineering; telecommunications; industrial automation; the effect of health, safety, and environmental regulation on technological innovation; the impacts of intellectual property law on innovation and equity; pharmaceuticals; nanotechnology; cost/benefit analysis as a decision tool; public participation in governmental decisions affecting science and technology; corporate influence on technology; and law and economics as competing paradigms to encourage sustainability. Permission of instructor required for freshmen and sophomores.
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