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Princeton  ​|  2 - 15 July 2023


Psychology & law 

This interdisciplinary program serves to introduce advanced students to the principles of public policy.  

You will draw lessons from economics, psychology and game theory to understand how humans make choices and how information and incentives influence those choices. You will study political philosophy and jurisprudence to articulate a defensible theory of the just relationship between citizen and state. You will learn about how political science and particularly public choice theory and mechanism design enable us to implement legislative and regulatory solutions to economic, environmental and social problems.

The theme for this year's symposium is

Energy & Environment Policy.

Our students are ambitious to change the world, and we admire and encourage that. In order to equip you to change it for the better, to promote peace, justice and prosperity, we will help you understand the systemic dangers and difficulties of democratic politics, and how to distinguish between noble intentions and actual consequences. 

The world faces many challenges in the next few years, including how to maintain or improve people's standard of living without inflicting irreparable damage on the natural world.  

If you are thirsty not only for knowledge but for understanding, and if you are impatient to make the world a better place, this may be the perfect course for you. 

2 – 15 JULY, 2023
AGES 16 – 19



The aim of our annual public policy symposium is to identify and communicate the principles of good policy design and implementation, for which we must gather insights from economics, political science, behavioural psychology, legal scholarship, and ethics. The broad theme for this year's symposium is Energy & Environment Policy. 

The cost of energy has risen sharply in recent months, certainly in financial terms but arguably also in environmental terms. Some of the lectures will, therefore, address socio-economic challenges presented by the need to continue to supply homes and businesses with energy. Some of the interactive precepts will make use of case studies concerned with how to design regulations to safeguard the local and the global environment, while taking into account the rights and interests of those who bear the costs of such regulations.


We will also explore how climate models are constructed and tested, why multinational cooperation is so elusive, and how incentives can be used, not only to discourage behaviour which causes environmental damage but also to encourage problem-solving innovations.


More generally the curriculum will include the Law of Unintended Consequences, Public Choice Theory (sometimes called the economics of politics), and Game Theory & Mechanism Design.

John Locke students tend to be intellectually sophisticated, so you have probably already formed your mind on some of these policy questions. After two weeks in Princeton we are confident that you will not only be much better informed, but also more nuanced in your grasp of the salient issues. We hope you will be able to articulate your own opinions persuasively, but that you will also be better able to appreciate views with which you are inclined to disagree. 

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The John Locke Institute is proud of our distinguished faculty, many of whom are leaders within their respective fields. More importantly, they have a gift of inspiring our students with a love of ideas and an enthusiasm for their subjects. Above all else our faculty are role models, demonstrating the highest standards of critical thought, passionate advocacy for the best arguments, and a radical openness to the opinions of others.   

At our Public Policy Symposium you will be taught by current or recent professors from leading universities in Britain and America, and by authors and other thought leaders. 


welcome to PRINCETON

Situated an hour south of New York City, the town of Princeton is home to two of the world's foremost academic institutions, Princeton University and the Institute for Advanced Study, and one of the world's leading academic publishers, Princeton University Press. 

One of the eight Ivy League colleges, Princeton University was founded in 1746, making it the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in North America. Every year for the past ten years Princeton University has ranked First Place among all the universities in the United States.


The Institute for Advanced Study has been a centre of scholarly excellence since its foundation in 1930, and was the academic home of many of the greatest thinkers of the twentieth century, including J. Robert Oppenheimer, John von Neumann, Kurt Gödel, and Albert Einstein.


The John Locke Institute is proudly independent and has no formal ties to any university, but our summer school is hosted within the lecture and seminar rooms of Stuart Hall at the Princeton Theological Seminary. Our students stay in graduate accommodation on campus in Alexander Hall, and take their meals in Mackay Dining Hall.

The town of Princeton is one of the most beautiful college towns in America. We think you will love it.



Accommodation is at the Princeton Theological Seminary (five minutes' walk from city center) in single rooms with shared bathroom facilities.


  • Each bedroom will have blankets, sheets and towels. All the rooms have air conditioning.

  • Lunch and dinner are provided everyday except Sunday, 9 July, when we provide brunch and dinner. Most meals are served in the dining hall. 

  • Free WiFi.

  • Access to the library.

  • Coin operated laundry machines.

  • Five minutes' walk to the Princeton University convenience store.




You should plan to arrive at the summer school on Sunday 2 July between 2 pm and 5 pm, when you will receive your room keys and detailed symposium timetable. A welcome dinner is scheduled for 6pm. 

If you would like to be met by a driver at the airport on 2 July, we are offering a shuttle service from Newark Liberty International Airport and from John F. Kennedy International Airport for an extra charge. If you plan to take the shuttle please book a flight that arrives no later than 12:30 pm.

It is your responsibility to determine whether you need a visa and, if so, what kind of visa you need and how you should apply for it. Every overseas student must have a valid passport to enter the United States. You can find all the information about US visas here. For your purpose of travel, please select “Tourism or Visit”. Depending on your country of citizenship you may find that you are able to enter the USA on the Visa Waiver programme (ESTA). We can provide individual support, on request, for those who will need a visa.

We advise you to purchase travel insurance.


On the departure day, Saturday 15 July, check out is at 10am. 

We will be running a shuttle to Newark Liberty International Airport and to John F. Kennedy International Airport for an extra charge. If you plan to take the shuttle please book a flight that departs no earlier than 1:30 pm.

Our staff will be available to help you on the departure day so you don't miss your flight! 



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