Digital Anthropology: Exploring the Cultural and Policy Implications of the Rise in Human Use of Digital Technologies

Professor: Welser and Sieck
Units: 1
Elective Course
Concentrations: Quantitative Methods and Social Science

There is little debate over the extensive and entangled relationship between humans, technology and culture. From the printing press to automatic weapons, cyborgs to Facetime, much of human history, and of the future, is only understood through the lens of technology. The emergence and rise in technologies such as artificial intelligence, additive manufacturing, and cryptography, coupled with a growing democratization movement has resulted in an epoch where policy analysts and policy makers will be ineffective without real-time understanding of technology.

In this course, we will explore the connection between humans, technology and policy. How to interpret and use the data, networks, and tools in the digital world to gain insights into human behaviors? How do we enable the positive benefits of technology while mitigating its negative consequences? How do policy analysts interpret signals related to human use and interaction with technology to build implementable and resilient policy frameworks?