Reimagining Capitalism

POLS 1200

Debates over capitalism and its alternatives date back centuries. Proponents say that market institutions have enabled extraordinary productivity growth and life-saving innovations. Trade and the division of labor have been central to human progress in recent centuries. Capitalism’s critics point out that the growth of market economies has often had unacceptable consequences. This course is organized around four main challenges facing market economies today: environmental degradation, labor exploitation, inequality, and crisis. Can capitalism be reformed to solve the problems that it has helped generate, or is a market system unequipped to grapple with social and environmental challenges?

Political Economy of Labor and Development: The Future of Work

POLS 2155

This seminar explores the relationship between work and technological change. New technologies have enabled machines to perform predictable (and in some cases unpredictable) tasks with increasing skill. The widely discussed improvements of “machine intelligence” have the potential to reshape labor markets across the world. Reactions among scholars, policymakers, and the public have varied from optimism about the social and economic benefits of these innovations to fears about the joblessness and inequality that might result. How can we understand the impact of new technological developments on the labor market, the experience of working, and the identity of workers?

Building a Better World: Film and Social Change

POLS 1490 S01

This class explores some of today's key policy challenges: economic development and poverty alleviation, the provision of basic public services, corruption, management of natural resources, environmental protection, intergroup violent conflict, and on the role of visual media in bringing about positive social change in the world.

Proseminar in Comparative Politics


Provides a survey of major approaches, issues, and debates in the field of comparative politics. Topics: state formation, revolutions and civil wars, ethnic conflict and nationalism, state-market relations; systems of representation, hegemony and domination.

Comparative Politics Graduate Research Workshop


The Comparative Politics Research Workshop is a new core element of the doctoral program in the Political Science department aimed at helping students transition effectively from the coursework phase of the PhD to doing their own independent scholarship.