The Centre for Inclusive Trade Policy, the first centre dedicated to trade policy to be funded by the UK Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), is built on the precept that trade policy should be inclusive in both policy formulation and outcome and focuses on four dimensions of inclusiveness: geography, political domains, society and generations.
In addition to the EUI as the only non-UK university, the Centre brings together researchers from the University of Sussex, University of Nottingham, the University of Strathclyde, Queen’s University Belfast, Cardiff University and the University of Cambridge.
Led by Professors L. Alan Winters and Michael Gasiorek at the University of Sussex Business School with Giovanni Facchini of the University of Nottingham as deputy director, the team comprises scholars from economics, law, business management, politics and international relations.
The EUI team, led by Professor Bernard Hoekman at the Robert Schuman Centre, will contribute to the activities of the Centre with research on the design of international cooperation as a means to reduce the costs of regulatory heterogeneity, with a specific focus on open plurilateral agreements among like-minded countries and the effects of participation in public procurement and services trade and digital policies on firm-level economic performance.
Hoekman noted: “Multidisciplinary research on the economic and distributional effects of trade policy increasingly calls for a focus on regulatory and industrial policies targetting digital and services activities. Such research is urgently needed to inform not only the design of national policy but to identify opportunities for international regulatory cooperation and joint action to achieve shared values.”
The Centre’s objectives include conduct frontier disciplinary and interdisciplinary research into international trade and policy, create a body of data and innovative methods, work extensively to inform public debateand more. The Centre will also run a competition for funds for early and mid-career researchers who offer innovative proposals within international trade policy.
Professor Erik Jones, Direstor of the EUI’s Robert Schuman Centre, said “I am delighted that the ESRC has awarded funding for a centre on inclusive trade policy and very pleased to be the only continental European university associated with the initiative. The new Centre fits perfectly into our strategic plans, exemplifying research with impact in making research accessible in order to solve the grand issues of our time.”