Ethics of Public Policy
The course offers a toolbox drawn from normative ethics which finds applications in public governance, primarily focusing on policy making and executive action. It includes ethical concepts and principles culled from different philosophical traditions, ranging from more familiar Western theories to non-Western ethical perspectives. Through the method of case-study analysis It attempts to show the significance of public practical reasoning in policy decisions. Acknowledging the challenges that policy makers often face, the course highlights the fact that policy making is hardly an exercise yielding a black-or-white solution; rather it involves finding the most reasonable normative outcome (course of action) in a given situation, especially employing an expanded understanding of values including justice, well-being, sustainability, interdependence and community. It aims to help bridge the gap between ethical theorists and policy practitioners by exemplifying the role of ‘engaged philosophy’ in public governance.
Associate Professor, Flame University