PSIA, Master in Human Rights and Humanitarian Action
methods and tools that we will teach you. You will collectively build a database that will become the natural resource for scholars and journalists willing to learn and understand your controversy. This database will be made public on the PSIA website once the term is over. A white paper. The insights gained from becoming specialists of your controversy will be consolidated into a white paper. The point of the paper is to sharpen the contentious points of the controversy and clarify its dynamics. So this is « white » as in normatively neutral but decidedly engaged in moving the controversy out of its opacity and shedding light on it. You will be helped every step of the way to write it up. Tasks will be assigned on a weekly basis, and roles will be rotated so that all group members get to do everything, that is collect data, analyse and summarize, write sections of the paper, design the main argument of the paper. Workload : This is a project course. As such it is experimental and the delivery (the combined white paper and database) will be the direct result of your involvement in your group. Expect to read a lot and to discuss a lot. Readings and discussions will be mostly about the case your group will study, so solidly grounded in a controversial situation that needs to be understood, analyzed and explained in objective and scientiﬁc manners. Pedagogical method : This course has been labelled as a "PSIA pedagogically innovative course" : Concrete application of theoretical knowledge on a project-based course ; Learning the ethics and methods of working on a class project over 3 months ; Development of strong team work and peers management skills in an international context ; Work on controversial situations and topics with a production of white papers and databases. Since it is a project-based course, you will work intensely with your group, under the supervision of your group teacher. Each week, you will meet your group to work on an assignment, and you will present your ﬁndings during class to your group teacher and to your classmates. Some weeks, your group will be organized in subgroups. Other weeks, but rarely apart from the introduction, you will meet with the whole class.
One of the important by-product of this course is to learn the ethics and methods of working on a class project over 3 months. At a time of increasing complexity of questions that you will have to tackle, whether in the industry, in national state agencies or in academia, working by oneself is less and less an option. Course Description : This course has been labelled as a “PSIA pedagogically-innovative course” (see below pedagogical format for further information). Financial information is a global commodity ; traders, brokers and all market actors strive to acquire it and exploit it. As all commodities, it is strictly regulated and market regulators spend millions of dollars to organize it. How should ﬁnancial information be released ? Who can use it to trade ? This controversy has pitted economists and lawyers against each other around divergent theories of bad (bad as fraudulent) and efﬁcient (bad as poorly skilled) traders. How (not) to be a bad trader studies the various positions and proposals pushed to organize the securities market around its most valuable resource, information. At stake in this controversy is the possibility of upholding the model of the universal investor launched during the WW1 to fund the war effort. The crux of the matter has revolved around the need to invite to the securities markets small investors. Being less sophisticated than professional investors, their moves on these markets can be suboptimal and they could potentially distort prices and undermine markets. But the ﬁnancial exchanges need them to grow. So more than one economist has advocated for a sequential release of ﬁnancial information whereby sophisticated investors would have ﬁrst access and trade on that basis before small investors would learn about that information a