Center for Global Affairs
Policy Hacking: International Relations by Design
This course teaches students how to apply information design in the presentation of their research. Students wishing to work in fields where they may be either shaping or dictating policy will inevitably confront the need to tailor their approach in a way that accounts for the minimal time decision-makers have. Long, qualitative reports, while still in use, are losing their utility as global events accelerate in speed; decision-makers, confronted with stacks of reports, usually wind up reading none and craft their policy reactively, as opposed to proactively. The best future policy-makers will hold visual language skills in order to package their information in a format that resonates with end-users. This requires an understanding not only of the issues at stake, but of the tools and techniques to present these issues quickly, concisely and memorably. This course is designed to help students take research into a visual framework in order to facilitate better policy planning. It is designed to be offered in tandem with other courses on Futures and Foreign Policy work and is meant to give students a basic working knowledge of how to present complex information in new 21st century formats.