MORAL REASONING IN THE POLICY PROCESS
2018/2019, Semester 1
Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (Lee Kuan Yew School Of Public Policy)
Modular Credits: 4
This course discusses the fundamentals of logic, moral philosophy and the art of policy communications. It has a theoretical component in political and moral philosophy and a practical component in policy communications. It provides a foundation for the tool of moral reasoning, the processes of public decision-making and the critical and analytical tools for public discourse.
PP5156 Moral Reasoning in the Policy Process
Venue: SR 3-4
HOR Chor Kiat
This course argues that policy processes are inherently value
laden and that public policy education must equip the practitioner with the fundamentals of logic, economic and moral reasoning, and to recognize these elements within the three main institutional forms by which public affairs can be organized. These are the state, markets and the commons. The course is accordingly divided into these three parts, with a point and counterpoint as detailed below.
It has a theoretical component in political and moral philosophy and a practical component in understanding policy processes and communications. The classes will contain elements of moral philosophy, processes of public decision
making and critical and analytical tools for public discourse. While it strives for a working understanding of moral traditions, its main purpose is to relate these to policy making as a means of understanding, evaluating and communicating public policy and moral values.
This course will examine four policy cases: 1) morality of online influencing
a large telecommunications company, Singtel, which paid third
party influencers to talk down a competitor’s project; 2) a case of legislating morals –the Singapore state making it illegal not to provide for parents; 3) the development of the last kampong in Singapore; and 4) an environmental problem of peatlands in Indonesia, where forest fires cause the annual problem of haze.
1. Maintenance of Parents Act (Speaker: Social workers)
2. Kampung Lorong Buangkok (Speaker: Owner of Kampung)
3. Online Media: XiaXue and Singtel (Speaker: XiaXue Wendy Cheng)
4. The Politics of Peatlands: Kerinci (Trip to Kerinci)
By the end of this course, you should be able to:
Identify and analyze the moral limits of three main organizational forms
state, markets, commons.
Understand and locate policy arguments within broad moral philosophical traditions;
Develop a working idea of your own personal moral philosophy as it relates to policy claims
• Frame controversial policies.
Understand, criticize and deploy communication strategies.
There are two field trips –a long (6
hour) field trip as well as a full
day one –for this course. Students are also encouraged to make another research trip to the same location on their own where possible. These trips will not impose additional class time but will take the place of class(es).
The course at a glance:
Part 1: Key concepts
Part 2: Moral Structures
Part 3: Applications
Maintenance of Parents
The Last Kampong
Essay: max 2500 words 50 %
Group project and Class presentation 30 %
Class participation 20%
Workload Components : A-B-C-D-E
A: no. of lecture hours per week
B: no. of tutorial hours per week
C: no. of lab hours per week
D: no. of hours for projects, assignments, fieldwork etc per week
E: no. of hours for preparatory work by a student per week