Does one government have the right to insist on another government’s adherence to human rights standards? Do corporations have an obligation to invest in the communities where they do business? How do we reconcile the need for development and need for conservation? Who gets to decide how natural resources are used? What does an ethical immigration policy look like? Who is responsible for the growing world refugee population? Is humanitarian intervention always a good thing? Is our obligation to local poverty different than it is global poverty? Can radical inequality ever be just?
The Ethics, Leadership and Global Citizenship Focus Program cluster grapples with the questions countries, companies, and individuals increasingly confront in a global world. It is about how to create and evaluate solutions to these ethical challenges. Drawing upon insights from anthropology, philosophy, sociology and public policy, we explore together what it means to be a global citizen and ethical leader in the twenty-first century, and what rights and obligations come with global citizenship. Bringing together theory, contemporary case studies from around the world, and local service learning opportunities, this cluster cultivates the crucial tools of moral dialogue necessary for lifelong engagement—locally, nationally, globally—as ethical leaders.
We seek to build a sustainable community of students engaged in ethical inquiry, and you would have access to additional civic engagement and research opportunities offered through the Kenan Institute for Ethics. During the fall semester, there will be a Focus field trip to Washington D.C. to explore questions of national and global citizenship with a variety of policy makers and practitioners in government, non governmental and international organizations and think tanks.. In addition, Focus students are welcomed into the Institute’s community of engaged student leaders, with additional academic and experiential opportunities, including DukeEngage Dublin, the Kenan Summer Fellows Program, the Refugee Resettlement Project in Durham, Egypt, Jordan and Nepal, and Team Kenan.
Kay Jowers, Senior Fellow, Kenan Institute for Ethics; Senior Policy Associate, Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions
This course examines the environmental justice movement, its countermovements, including nationalist and conservative movements, and how their interplay shapes political opportunities and responses. We will consider the substantive concerns of the environmental justice movement (the needs of humans in the built environment), its methods (community-based political organizing carefully coordinated with allies within legal professions and academia), and the scales at which it operates (local, national, global). Because social movements of political significance will generate opposition, we will also consider the rise of nationalist and conservative movements that interact with and challenge the environmental justice movement. These topics will be explored using a range of materials, including scholarly books, articles, case studies, and documentary films.
Juliette Duara, Senior Fellow at the Kenan Institute for Ethics
This course examines the role of human rights and global justice in world politics. It seeks to understand how and why the human rights regime was created, how human rights standards and notions of global justice have evolved, and the role of advocacy organizations in promoting human rights at both the domestic and international levels. We will consider questions such as whether human right are universal, what role human rights and global justice should be play in U.S. foreign policy, which strategies are most effective in promoting human rights and global justice, and which risk inciting backlash. The course will cover topics including civil and political rights; economic, social and cultural rights; genocide, torture, business and human rights, conflict diamonds and university investment, humanitarian intervention, and the international criminal court. It will use a range of materials, including scholarly books and articles, case studies, NGO reports and films.
Eric Mlyn, Distinguished Faculty Fellow in the Kenan Institute for Ethics; Lecturer in the Sanford School of Public Policy
This course explores the history of the public mission of American institutions of higher education and the contemporary manifestations of this mission. We will examine the resurgence of the civic engagement movement in American colleges and universities in the 1980s and the impact of the wide range of curricular and co-curricular programs that have emerged in the last decades. Students will review key academic reports and consider recommendations for changes to what we are doing and how we do it and will gain a deep familiarity with the variety of civic programs at Duke. Together we will ask: "what role should civic engagement play in American higher education?"
Ada Gregory, Associate Director, Kenan Institute for Ethics
Restorative Justice (RJ) has emerged as a “new” means of reforming the modern justice system. This course explores the aims of RJ to provide an alternative to typical retributive justice models in various contexts: the criminal justice/education systems, the environmental justice movement, and in international human rights work. Beginning with an overview of theory and practice, the course will critically consider RJ’s strengths and limitations to address harms within and beyond State boundaries and those affecting past and future generations or entities other than humans (animals, plants, rivers, land). The course will ultimately ask whether RJ offers the kind of shift needed in our society to adequately address the current failings in our justice systems within our communities, our institutions, and our world.