Department of Political Science

College of Letters & Science
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PEPP Certificate

The Political Economy, Philosophy, and Politics (PEPP) Certificate is rooted in a core insight: social, economic, and political problems have ethical, political, and economic dimensions. While the first program (Politics, Philosophy, and Economics, or PPE) formally combining these three approaches was created at Oxford University in 1920, it drew on a tradition of inquiry that brought the three perspectives together. Since its creation at Oxford, similar programs have been created at a wide range of the world’s leading universities.

If we move from the insight behind the program to what it means in practice, we can see that understanding, for example, immigration requires understanding it from political, economic, and ethical perspectives. In short, understanding the pressing political, economic, or philosophical problems of the day entails seeing them from a perspective that brings together all three disciplines. As a result, the PEPP curriculum brings together faculty and coursework from three different academic departments: Economics, Philosophy, and Political Science. This cross-disciplinary curriculum is important not just for intellectual development, but also for fostering the habits of mind central to democratic citizenship.

Students who enroll in the PEPP Certificate will thus take coursework from Political Science, Economics, and Philosophy, and the Certificate program will culminate in a small-enrollment, research and writing oriented capstone seminar, Political Science 461. Combining breadth across the three disciplines with depth within two of the three, the PEPP Certificate is a rigorous and exciting opportunity for cross-disciplinary study.