Trade Dialogues Lecture Series
As part of its Trade Dialogues Series, the WTO will be inviting leading technical experts to share their insights with WTO members and the broader trade community on important economic and policy developments. The initial lectures, organized by the Economic Research and Statistics Division, will focus on the latest research on trade and labour market effects.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in these presentations are those of the authors. They are not intended to represent the positions or opinions of the WTO or its members and are without prejudice to members' rights and obligations under the WTO. Any errors are attributable to the authors.
There are signs that negative sentiment towards trade and globalization is on the rise. The perception that the costs of globalization exceed its benefits and that globalization raises inequality figures prominently among the reasons for this apparent change in attitude. One of the areas where there is growing interest relates to trade, technology, inequality and labour market outcomes. By bringing together the experts, policy makers and a general audience, these lectures aim to promote an informed and transparent discussion on a timely topic.
20 November 2018, 14:30 to 16:00: Room D, WTO Headquarters
- Marc Bacchetta, WTO
- Emmanuelle Ganne, WTO
- Roberta Piermartini, WTO
- Robert Teh, WTO
Topic: An in-depth look at the World Trade Report 2018
Trade has always been shaped by technology but the rapid development of digital technologies in recent times has the potential to transform international trade profoundly in the years to come. Computing, automation and data analytics are coming together in entirely new ways that deeply impact what we trade, how we trade and who is trading. What will be the consequences of the "new digital revolution" on the world economy, and in particular on international trade?
The World Trade Report 2018 examines how digital technologies – and in particular the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, 3D printing and Blockchain – affect trade costs, the nature of what is traded and the composition of trade. It provides an analysis of the changes at play and estimates the extent to which global trade may be affected over the next 15 years.
In this lecture, authors of the report will present the key findings of the Report.
31 January 2018, 14:00 to 15:15: Room E, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Paola Conconi, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium
Topic: Do Rules of Origin hurt third countries?
Rules of Origin are a common ingredient of Regional Trade Agreements but their effects on trade patterns are poorly understood. Professor Conconi will present unique and novel findings on this relationship. In particular, she will show how Rules of Origin affect imports of intermediate goods from third countries and discuss the potential implications of her findings with respect to the WTO agreements.
Paola Conconi is Professor of Economics at the Université Libre de Bruxelles and Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She is also Director of the CEPR Research Network on Global Value Chains, Trade and Development. Her main research interests are in international trade, firm organization, and political economy. She holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Warwick and has published in several leading journals including the American Economic Review, the Review of Economic Studies, the Journal of Political Economy, and the Journal of International Economics.
9 November 2017, 14:00 to 15:15: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
- Marc Bacchetta, WTO
- Cosimo Beverelli, WTO
- Roberta Piermartini, WTO
- Robert Teh, WTO
Topic: An in-depth look at the World Trade Report 2017
The role of trade and technology in shaping labour market outcomes has been under intense scrutiny over the last years. It has also been the topic of many of our recent Trade Dialogues Lectures, and the theme of the recently launched World Trade Report entitled "Trade, technology and jobs". In this lecture, authors of the report will present the insights they have gained from surveying and interpreting the vast empirical and theoretical evidence on the issue.
29 June 2017, 14:00 to 15:15: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
Topic: Trade in Ideas as New Development Policy
Technology spill-overs from high-income countries can significantly accelerate the economic development of low-income countries. Similarly, the rapid educational advancements of low-income countries can enlarge the global stock of ideas. Professor Ullberg discusses the role of organized markets in facilitating this global trade in ideas as well as the implications for policy making in the area of intellectual property, education, and taxation.
Eskil Ullberg is Adjunct Professor at George Mason University and, for twenty years, a senior consultant for government agencies, international organizations and firms. His research focuses on the market in patents and the effect on long-term economic growth. His particular interest is in examining which institutional and taxation policies encourage the flow of ideas between developed and developing economies.
6 June 2017, 14:00 to 15:30: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Ralph Ossa (University of Zurich), Switzerland
Topic: Trade talks and trade wars: How high are the gains and the costs?
What tariffs would prevail in a world-wide trade war and how costly would a breakdown of international trade policy cooperation be? What is the scope for future multilateral trade negotiations and how large are the gains from rules-based trade? Professor Ossa will present answers to these questions and highlight the benefits of multilateral trade cooperation.
Ralph Ossa is Professor of Economics of Globalization and Emerging Markets at the University of Zurich. He has conducted research in both these areas with a particular emphasis on questions of policy relevance. Prior to moving to Zurich, he served on the faculty of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He holds a PhD in Economics from the London School of Economics and has published in several leading journals including the American Economic Review, the Journal of Political Economy, and the Journal of International Economics.
9 May 2017, 14:30 to 16:00: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Jens Suedekum (University of Düsseldorf), Germany
- Professor Farid Toubal (Ecole Normale Supérieure de Cachan), France
Topic: Technology, Trade and Structural Change
In many advanced and developing economies, manufacturing jobs are disappearing while services jobs are on the rise. This structural change has been underway for decades, but recent political debate in some countries has reignited a vivid interest in its drivers and its consequences for the labour market. Professors Suedekum and Toubal will discuss the role of technology and international trade, and thus provide more insights into the type of jobs that technology and globalization create in advanced economies. Jens Suedekum is Professor of International Economics at the Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE) at Heinrich-Heine-University Düsseldorf. He is also a research fellow of CEPR, the Institute for Employment Research (IAB) and the CESifo network. His main research areas are urban and regional economics and international trade. Farid Toubal is Professor of Economics at the ENS of Cachan and associate researcher at Center for Research in Economics and Statistics (CREST). He is also a member of the French Council of Economic Analysis, research fellow of the CESifo network and scientific advisor at the Centre d’Études Prospectives et d’Informations Internationales (CEPII). His research mainly focuses on multinational activities, international trade and migration.
22 March 2017, 15:15 to 16:30: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Marc-Andreas Muendler (University of California, San Diego)
Topic: Globalization and the task content of jobs
Professor Muendler will discuss the impact of trade integration and multinational production on the changing task assignment to occupations and the skill requirements of jobs, highlighting consequences for wage inequality and employment. His work has wide policy implications, for instance in the areas of education and re-training, and has been published in leading journals such as the American Economic Review or the Review of Economic Studies. He is Associate Professor at the University of California, San Diego and has worked as a Consultant to the World Bank and private businesses, and as a Consulting Researcher for the Brazilian labor Ministry, the Brazilian census bureau, the German central bank and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Professor Muendler was Peter B. Kenen Research Fellow at Princeton University. He received his Ph.D. in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley.
2 March 2017, 16:00 to 17:15: Room S2, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Gaaitzen J. de Vries (University of Groningen, NL)
Topic: Offshoring, technology and job polarization
Professor de Vries will discuss the impact of offshoring and technological change on job polarization in advanced and emerging economies and, in particular, assess the relative importance of the two phenomena. He is most notably known for his influential contribution to Global Value Chains research and the World Input Output Database project. Professor de Vries lectures at the University of Groningen where he also obtained his PhD in 2009. He has been a consultant and advisor for various organisations including the United Nations, the Asian Development Bank, and the OECD. His work has been published in several influential journals such as the Journal of Economic Perspectives and Economic Policy.
31 January 2017, 14:00 to 15:15: Room S3, WTO Headquarters
- Dr. Carl Benedikt Frey (Oxford University, UK)
Topic: Technology and the future of work
Dr. Frey will discuss the role of automation for the future of work in the context of globalisation. He is most notably known for the influential assessment that nearly half of the jobs in the United States are susceptible to automation in the next decades. He is Oxford Martin Citi Fellow at Oxford University where he directs the programme on Technology and Employment at the Oxford Martin School – regarded as the world's leading programme on the future of work. He is one of the most widely cited scholars in the field of workforce automation and industrial renewal and his work has been covered by The Economist, Financial Times, New York Times, and many others.
20 December 2016, 10:00 to 11:00: Room S2, WTO Headquarters
- Professor Eric Verhoogen (Columbia University, New York)
Topic: Trade, the wage premium and inequality
Professor Verhoogen will make a non-technical presentation on the topic of trade, the wage premium and inequality. He has published several seminal studies in leading journals on the effect that trade has on wage inequality in the context of developing economies. He is also the Vice Dean of the School of International and Public Affairs and the Co-Director of the Center for Development Economics and Policy at Columbia University in New York City.
12 December 2016, 14.30 to 15.30: Room D, WTO Headquarters
- Professor David Dorn (University of Zürich, Switzerland)
Topic: The role of trade and technology for labour market adjustment
Professor Dorn will give a non-technical lecture on the role of trade and technology for labour market adjustment and will put the findings of the field into context. He is the co-author of the influential study The China Shock: Learning from Labor Market Adjustment to Large Changes in Trade and a series of other papers that assess the impact of import competition from China on labour markets in the United States. His findings have been a key influence on the political debate surrounding trade in the United States and Europe.
21 November 2016, 10:00 to 12.00: Room S1, WTO Headquarters
- Lucian Cernat (Chief Economist, DG Trade European Commission)
- Professor Torben Andersen (Aarhus University, Denmark)
Topic : Findings on the effectiveness of trade-specific and general labour market adjustment policies
Lucien Cernat will evaluate the European Globalization Fund, a mechanism to finance trade adjustment programmes in EU member countries. With almost 20 years of experience in the trade policy field, he is in charge of economic advice on EU trade policy, influencing over 4.5 trillion euros of EU trade flows annually. He is a frequent speaker at high-level events alongside award-winning economists and his publications are quoted in leading international journals.
Professor Andersen will discuss Flexicurity, the Danish integrated strategy for enhancing flexibility and security in the labour market. He is a respected authority on the programme and has widely published on the success of the Nordic model. For numerous years, he has also been advising governments on improving their labour market adjustment policies.