Technology continues to impact society across all industry sectors and aspects of daily life. Sanford’s focus on technology policy prepares students to address issues of government support for innovation and actions to mitigate the negative impacts that technology can make on individuals’ lives.
You will be prepared to assume positions in public service, the private sector and nonprofits dealing with public policy issues associated with tech innovation: legislative staff, executive agency analyst, national security and law enforcement, company government affairs manager, consultant and civil society advocates.
The concentration equips you to understand the different roles that organizations play in the development of tech public policy, including legislatures, regulatory agencies, international organizations, standards setting bodies, civil society organizations, private sector technology companies, telecommunications companies and lobbying consultants.
Focus on tech policy implications in national security, healthcare, media and gender violence prevention. The overlapping issues of ethics, privacy, cybersecurity, free expression and the impact on historically disenfranchised populations cut across all aspects of the curriculum.
Students can benefit from
Students enjoy inter-disciplinary ties to other Duke schools and academic programs (e.g., the Dewitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy, the Democracy Lab, the Duke Center for International Development, The Kenan Institute of Ethics, Science and Society, the Margolis Center for Health Policy, Duke Law Center for Innovation Policy, the Triangle Privacy Research Hub, American Grand Strategy, Duke Forge, the Center for Computational Thinking, the Duke Center for Law and Technology, the Pratt School Masters in Cybersecurity Engineering Program, the undergraduate Cyberclub, and the Duke Office of Information Technology.
Faculty members have an outstanding combination of academic and practical credentials in the world of technology policy, including professors of the practice with years of relevant government, non-profit and private sector experience.
Each semester is packed with campus visits and speeches by current technology policy leaders.
Federal Trade Commission Commissioner Christine S. Wilson came to campus to explore federal privacy legislation. The event brought leading academic experts together for a detailed discussion of how to make progress towards a law that will provide a regulatory structure optimizing for both the innovative and ethical use of data.
Knowledge and skills you can acquire
- A global view of technology policy
- Understanding of the roles different organizations play in technology policy
- Knowledge of the impact public policy has in fostering innovation
- A perspective on privacy and cybersecurity risks created by new technologies
- The ability to participate in practical research
- Knowledge of the implementation of artificial intelligence across many domains
- Connections to internships and capstone projects with tech policy leaders
Policy Concentration Advisor
Professor of the Practice in the Sanford School of Public Policy
Kenneth S. Rogerson is Professor of the Practice at Duke's Sanford School of Public Policy, and former Research Director of the DeWitt Wallace Center for Media and Democracy at Duke University. He is currently the Director of Graduate Studies for the Sanford Master's of Public Policy Program and the Director of Duke's Policy Journalism and Media Studies Certificate Program. He has served as chair of the American Political Science Association’s Information Technology and Politics Section and the International Studies Association's International Communication Section.
Rogerson earned a PhD in Political Science at the University of South Carolina, where his research focused on international relations, international communications and media policy issues. In his dissertation, he examined the evolution of U.S. foreign information policy. He has a Masters of Arts degree in International Relations and a BA in Journalism and European Studies from Brigham Young University.
During his studies at the University of South Carolina Rogerson won the Excellence in Teaching Award, and the journal which he edited, Global Governance, was named the Best New Journal in the United States in Business, Social Sciences and the Humanities by the Association of American Publishers.
Mona Zahir MPP ’23 says her time in the tech industry as a risk analyst for Meta Inc. (fka Facebook) made her fall in love with tech policy, and that's where Sanford came in. "I wanted to attend a school that had a tech policy concentration and brilliant leaders to learn from. I am also honored to be a Thomas Pickering Fellow with the State Department and will be entering the foreign service as a diplomat after Sanford! I am glad to be taking both tech and foreign policy courses to prepare me for this exciting career."