SI 430: Information Technology and Global Society

In this course, students will examine recent and current global events featuring information technology, and through both discussion and introspection, construct their own personal hypotheses of technology and society. Along the way, students will hear about the way in which information technology is touching the remotest places in the world, gain an introduction to formal theories of technology and society, and stress-test their critical thinking skills. Winter 2016 syllabus.

Instructor: Kentaro Toyama

SI 537: Crisis Informatics

Saving lives in crises means being prepared, coordinated and fast. Information and technology are increasingly the tools people in need are turning to. As humanitarian organizations have agreed, “information is aid.” Participants in this class will learn to examine crisis situations, in continuum from personal to international crises, and evaluate and plan relevant information technology responses. The class will review personal crises such as a major accident; and recent international crisis-disaster response, such as the Syrian Refugee migration, Hurricane Sandy, and Nepal earthquake. Students will have an opportunity to have hands-on experience with the technology tools used in disaster response, and work in teams with senior executives from international NGO’s and corporations.

InstructorEd Happ

SI 545: Information Technology and Development: Contemporary Issues

Information Technology and Development: Contemporary Issues — This course will discuss contemporary developments in information technology and global development. We focus on four domain areas within ICTs and Development worldwide: Education, healthcare, governance, and governance, examine the role of appropriate design in building technology tools applied towards development issues, and finally we examine critically the idea of ICT4D. Through reading, discussion, and a group project, students will gain design, research, and critical thinking skills in technology and development issues.

InstructorJoyojeet Pal

SI 657: Information Technology and International Development

This course will provide an intensive introduction to the field of information technology and global development, in its historical, policy, and design dimensions. Part one offers an overview of key historical and contemporary debates in international development, and an introduction to recent theoretical works on technology and development including. We explore a broad range of work from historical academic literature on development to contemporary commentary on issues such as economic growth, urban and infrastructural change, culture, environment, humanitarian issues, healthcare, and quality of life.

Part two explores the growing literature on technology and development. Through readings, discussions, and course assignments, students will gain an understanding of several of the key issues being faced in the developing world, and examine the role of technology in these. Through geographically focused project and discussion groups, students will also develop specific regional or country-level knowledge and experience. Fall 2013 syllabus.

InstructorJoyojeet Pal

SI 691: Global Information Engagement Program

In this course, student teams will leverage their emergent skills in content management and delivery, contextual inquiry, needs assessment, product ideation, consultation and a deep understanding of the complex relationships between people, information, and technology to address a context sensitive information challenge (management, access, design ICT-related) faced by participating heritage, government and NGO organizations. Student teams will work with select NGO organizations ion information projects with high positive societal impact. Preceding locating to an on-site international location in May – June, students will undertake a half term of preparatory exercises including developing an understanding of the project and culture of program, site and various pre-departure activities. This program seeks to operationalize the skills of professional master’s degree students at the University of Michigan to develop sustainable information management practices that have positive societal impact. This program fulfills the internship requirement for MSI students; MHI students will need approval from MHI program leadership to determine internship fulfillment.

Instructor: Joyojeet Pal, David Wallace

SI 710: Philosophical Approaches to ICT and Social Change

We examine various notions of social change and international development as theorized by philosophy, anthropology, economics, and other fields; consider how they differ from one another as drivers of social change; and look at how they relate to both interventionist and observational work involving information and communication technology (ICT) and social causes in global contexts. Students will also be expected to develop and articulate their own personal theories about development.

This course is self-contained. There are no course prerequisites, but it is expected that students have a willingness to engage in introspection, class discussion, thoughtful reading and writing, and deep critical thinking. Winter 2017 Syllabus.

Instructor: Kentaro Toyama