Philosophy
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

PHIL 694: Special Topics in Contemporary Philosophy

PHIL 694-001: Method Dimensions of Clim Sci
(Fall 2017)

04:30 PM to 07:10 PM R

Planetary Hall (formerly Science & Tech I) 224

Section Information for Fall 2017

PHIL 694-001: Methodological and Normative Dimensions of Climate Science

Thursday 4:30 - 7:10 PM

Instructor: Andrew Light

alight1@gmu.edu

Climate change is one of the most difficult challenges humanity has ever faced. At its core, it is simultaneously one of the hardest problems of both collective action and distributive justice. Our understanding of this problem though, and the urgency we face in finding domestic and international solutions to it, is built on a diverse body of science going back to the end of the 19th century, when a Swedish chemist, Svante Arrhenius, first hypothesized that humans could warm the planet through the burning of fossil fuels. In this course we will focus on both the methodological and normative dimensions of climate science. First, how do we know what we know -- from the historical temperature and greenhouse gas record, current observations, and computer modeling -- and second, whether there are normative implications of the findings from this science with respect to identifying the solution set for climate change. We will end with a look at the question of whether climate scientists have any obligations to involve themselves in the policy debates on climate change given their fundamental role in understanding this challenge to people and the planet.

For students in the Traditional and Contemporary Philosophy focus, this course can be used as an elective.
For students in the Ethics and Public Affairs concentration, this course can be used to fulfill 3 credits of the 9-credit ethics requirement; or can be used as an elective.

Topic Varies

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Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3

Topics vary. Notes: May be repeated for credit when topic is different. May be repeated within the term for a maximum 9 credits.
Registration Restrictions:

Enrollment limited to students with a class of Advanced to Candidacy, Graduate, Non Degree or Senior Plus.

Enrollment is limited to Graduate, Non-Degree or Undergraduate level students.

Students in a Non-Degree Undergraduate degree may not enroll.

Schedule Type: Seminar

The University Catalog is the authoritative source for information on courses. The Schedule of Classes is the authoritative source for information on classes scheduled for this semester. See the Schedule for the most up-to-date information and see Patriot web to register for classes.

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