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The course examines the theories and nature of marketing, propaganda, psychological operations, perception management, and several forms of (information) warfare under social, informational, and organizational aspects. The class will investigate the roots and development of such methods and operations in network concentric environments. Students will analyze different command, control, communication, computer, and information infrastructures and discuss advantages and disadvantages in order to uncover exploits and evolve the method or product.

Special attention will be devoted to social and cultural implications of marketing, propaganda and information operations and warfare as well as to challenges and responses imposed. Based on an investigation of the history and evolution of marketing, agitation, propaganda and (information) warfare, participants of the course will gain an understanding of risk and threat analysis to information systems, apply countermeasures, and develop adequate response systems. In order to equip students with the know how needed to respond to upcoming threats appropriately, special consideration will be given to a methodical and strategic understanding of footprinting, automated scanning and enumerating, exploitation of vulnerabilities in services, applications, systems, and networks as well as incident reporting, assessment, intrusion detection, response and honey pots.

Analyzing threats as defacing, hacking, cracking, intrusion, denial of service attacks, viruses, Trojan horses, key logger, shock measures, eavesdropping, surveillance, espionage, cyberwar and netwar, the class will explore active and passive responses as security management, authentication, encryption, auditing and monitoring. Students will apply theory on several examples and campaigns, work in teams on small projects, and participate in a mixture of lectures, readings, discussions, and experiments. The class will give a brief introduction into several theoretical, technological, social, legal, and ethical issues.


After completing this course, students will have a basic understanding of marketing, propaganda, and information operations and will be prepared for further studies in this field. Participants will be able to analyze, plan, and conduct information operations. Students will be able to put such operations into context and respond appropriately.

Within the course students will analyze and prepare marketing and propaganda case studies and work together in small groups on network concentric marketing, propaganda and information warfare projects.


Students are encouraged to use office hours to discuss the assignments and/or course topics. Additional appointments and consultations can be scheduled with the Teaching Assistant.


The class will consist of a mix of lecture, discussion, online participation, and in-class “critique” sessions. A small set of readings are required to prepare for class and discussion, and an additional reading list will be provided to help student research as they work on their assignments. Throughout the course, students will iteratively critique each other’s assignments, ideas, comments, and works. Eventually there will be guest lecturers. In addition, participants of the course will prepare case studies, assignments, and work on team projects.


Familiarity with the Internet