Core Area E: Social Sciences

Introduction to Urban and Regional Planning

This course provides an overview of the planning of cities and metropolitan regions.  The legal and historical context as well as substantive areas or urban planning are addressed. Tensions among economic, environmental, and equity results of public policies and private developments are examined.  Tools for involving stakeholders in planning decisions are surveyed.

City Literacy: What Makes a Great City

If you have wondered why American cities today are simultaneously sites of hyper-investment (New York) and radical disinvestment (Detroit); why European cities privilege public spaces and life lived in public spaces (Barcelona); why Asian cities (Hong Kong) appear to have addressed the Coronavirus public health emergency better than others . . . Three basic questions provide the framework for this course: What makes a great city – its physical form or the life it affords its inhabitants? How do cities come to be – how do they start? How do they develop?

Energy, Environment, and Policy

This course explores the interplay between energy security, environmental stewardship, and society acceptance. For this reason, it is important to understand the environmental consequences of energy policy choices (and vice versa) as well as the necessity of Community and societal buy-in if sustainability is to be realized. We explore this interplay in the range of policy approaches pursued in various countries, including the United Sates, Japan, China, and the European Union.

Comparative Politics

This course surveys the main theories of comparative politics and introduces the comparative method, a tool for explaining why and how broadly similar polities employ different approaches in seeking to solve common problems. Although we will examine a variety of issues in this course, we will focus intensively on the complex interplay of factors that produces cross-national variation in policy responses to the challenges of sustainable development, which is the theme of Georgia Tech’s current Quality Enhancement Plan.

Introduction to Global Development

This course introduces students to the history, theory and practice of international development. Students will examine the different meanings and objectives of global development, paying particular attention to economic growth, poverty alleviation, inequality reduction, capability enhancement, the defense of human rights and sustainability.

Principles of Macroeconomics

Today is the perfect time to learn about macroeconomics! Current media discussions are exceptionally pointed and centered on many macro-economic policy issues. They range from various paths of economic recovery from the negative impacts of COVID, taxation and inequities, costs vs. benefits of environmental protection, trade wars, technology-driven job destruction vs. creation, welfare debates and the list goes on.

Race, Medicine, and Science

The primary objective of this course is to study the interrelationship of race, medicine, and science drawing on various literatures such as history, sociology, and anthropology. The course rigorously examines the social, political, and cultural concept of race and its usefulness as an analytical category with a emphasis on American history.

Intro to Sociology

The study of sociology is the study of society, and this introductory course teaches students to see that human communities are more than a collection of individuals, self-determined and self-directing. The course examines structural inequalities, cultural conditions, and social institutions that pattern and shape human behavior. First, students learn that the world around them is not "natural" but rather conditional, and human behavior is not "innate," but mutable through socialization.

American Environmental History

This course surveys the complex ecological, economic, cultural, social, and political outcomes that have resulted from human interactions with the natural world, in the geographical region encompassing the United States.

Social Movements

In this course, we analyze how “ordinary people” challenge powerful segments of society through social movements, and thereby contribute to social change. This course addresses several basic questions: Why do social movements emerge when they do? Why do movements succeed at some times, but fail at other times? Who participates, and why? And, what are the consequences of social movements for society and individual participants?

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