Policy Workshops

Meeting once per week during the fellowship

These interactive policy workshops are led by think tank experts and experienced government officials who will give academic and practical explanations of their topics, before leading students in a collaborative policy simulation. Students will have prepared for the discussion and the following simulation by reading provided material in advance of the meeting. These workshops allow students to actively engage in the policy making process, and wrestle with policy problems of our day. Students engage in 1-2 policy workshops per week. Each policy workshop is different, and the topics range from foreign policy, to military decision making, to questions of ethics. Below you will find an example workshops from the 2021 Summer Fellowship.

Criminal Justice Reform

Criminal Justice Reform This week five workshop saw the 2021 cohort examine contemporary issues regarding race, crime, and criminal justice reform. In seminars held at the Hudson Institute, students discussed race relations in America, and their relationship to policing. These conversations also concerned public opinion of police as well as the need for law enforcement; students reviewed the 2018 First Step Act, its implementation, and approaches to prison and rehabilitation. Led by John P. Walters — Hudson CEO, Director of the Political Studies program, and former director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) — students gained an appreciation for issues of race and the need for sustained public attention to crime and criminal justice reform.

Man in the Age of Technology

Man in the Age of TechnologyAs artificial intelligence and wearable technology advance toward making real a world hitherto only imagined in science fiction, what will the future be for humanity? In this 2021 policy workshop, students studied biological and ethical perspectives on humanity and technology. Their seminar discussion of these concerns led them to investigate transhumanism, its proponents, and its opponents. After mutually broadening their understanding of the issues at hand, students were then assigned a particular perspective and asked to debate each other about cybernetic technology and the human future.

Crisis in the Taiwan Strait

Crisis in the Taiwan StraitThis workshop, conducted during the fifth week of the 2021 Fellowship, brought diplomatic history to bear on perhaps the most ominous potential flashpoint in contemporary geopolitics. Students prepared for the crisis simulation with two three-hour seminars — in the first they discussed three Joint Communiques of the United States of America and the People’s Republic of China (1972, 1979, 1982) as well as significant domestic legislation from both countries; in the second, discussion shifted to strategists’ reflections and contemporary analyses of cross-Strait relations. During the simulation, groups were assigned countries party to the conflict. Responsible for acting as their country would in a time of crisis, students learn about the dictates of necessity and the limited options available to government officials of every country as they pursue their state interest. As they reflected on the development of grand strategy in the region, students learned about how diplomacy, trade, and military affairs factor into decision-making at the highest levels of government.

Defense and Technology

Defense and Technology In order to better understand the practical implications of emergent political rhetoric regarding conflict between the United States and China, students in this 2021 policy workshop evaluated their relative military capabilities. Especially focusing on the latest theories of systems warfare, students incorporated America's proven combined arms approach into a prospective analysis of 21st century technologies — namely, artificial intelligence. Led by Bryan Clark, Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, students discovered how AI-autonomous capabilities will take over from humans important aspects of our wars, as they came to understand how soldiers will partner with machines and algorithms that can fight much faster and at a far greater scale than human beings.

The Supreme Court in our Federal Republic

The Supreme Court in our Federal RepublicIn the first policy workshop of the program, students take on roles of petitioners, respondents, and Justices in arguing two recent Supreme Court cases. In 2021, students relitigated District of Columbia v. Heller, a landmark 5-4 vote from 2008 regarding the Second Amendment, and National Labor Relations Board vs Noel Canning, a unanimous decision from 2014 that delimited the President’s recess appointment authority. In each case, fellows read through the briefs of petitioner and respondent, as well as other relevant documents such as Federalist Papers. In oral arguments the Fellows were guided by Jeremy Rozansky, J.D., University of Chicago Law School. As the three groups learned about how cases are tried at the summit of the United States legal system, the students came to understand how various interpretations of our nation's law must sometimes be resolved by the judicial authority.