Geneva-based thematic courses focus on one or a group of WTO-related topics, and usually last one or two weeks. Briefing on WTO work progress in the topics concerned is an integral part of these courses. The training methods used put emphasis on interactive learning, practical exercises, case studies and debates. Simulation exercises are often used to offer participants opportunities to strengthen their skills. In terms of objectives, it is expected that at the end of the courses the participants will have:
- strengthened their theoretical understanding of the WTO-related topic(s) specifically addressed in the course (transfer of knowledge);
- strengthened their topic-related skills (improvement of skills);
- strengthened their confidence to actively engage in topic-related WTO work (confidence);
- strengthened their capacity to work in teams and in an international environment (team work); and
- established and/or strengthened a network of contacts with each other and the trainers/experts (network):
The thematic courses are organized by the ITTC in cooperation with experts from WTO divisions and sometimes with the ad hoc support of outside consultants or professors. Geneva-based delegates and guest speakers from other organizations active in the specific area of work concerned may also be invited to co-train. Government officials from developing countries and LDCs, economies in transition and acceding countries are eligible to participate in the thematic courses. Government officials from developed countries are also invited to participate in the Thematic Courses on Dispute Settlement Rules and Procedures, which are organized pursuant to Article 27.3 of the DSU.
Details of the courses to be held this year can be found here.
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