For most complex traits or behaviors like educational attainment, smoking, or body mass index, our genes are not are destiny; they are working through the environment around us, and in many cases, healthy environments are compensatory. As a result, salutary health and social policy can lift all boats, regardless of the DNA we were dealt.
Social genomics integrates theories and methods in the genomic, social, and population health sciences to answer questions relevant to public health and social well-being. Research topics in social genomics and their implications for social and public policy are covered in this course. Key concepts in human genetics, population genetics, and statistical genetics are introduced, as well as historical and contemporary policy debates surrounding scientific advances in genomics. Fundamental questions include social repercussions of genomics research, the rationale for government intervention, and how to approach policy analysis in an era where the genomic revolution is changing how we think about privacy and personal identity.