Cognitive Evolution: Change, Stability, and International Orders

My review of Emanuel Adler’s fascinating book “World Ordering: A Social Theory of Cognitive Evolution” has finally been published in the International Studies Review. It’s a very innovative take on many of the questions that have occupied International Relations theory, but Adler’s insights apply to so much more than creating and sustaining international order(s). I…

Comparing the EU and UK Negotiation Mandates

With the publication of both the EU and the UK‘s final negotiation directives earlier this week, we now have an opportunity to compare the two starting positions and move beyond the political rhetoric. While the level of detail is not great in these public documents and the mandates are certainly not without political and tactical…

Teaching Undergraduate Seminars: 12 Pieces of Advice

Concluding my second year of teaching at King’s College London made me think about what worked well and not so well in my seminars. To make sense of the dos and don’ts of teaching and hopefully provide some useful advice to other seminar leaders, this post summarises twelve quick takeaways. Although most of these insights…

Unfolding Research

I’m happy that after a lot of work we are finally able to officially launch the project website for Unfolding Research. Unfolding Research aims to discover and curate a set of easily accessible problem-solving strategies tailored to the needs of PhD students and early-career researchers. These strategies are the result of a long process of…

Diplomacy at the WTO: The General Council

I am currently extending and analysing my dataset on diplomatic interactions in the World Trade Organization (WTO). This post takes a brief look at the General Council, the highest decision-making body of the WTO. Just as 22 other WTO bodies, all minutes of the General Council are included in my dataset. An earlier post mapped…

Unpacking the Terms of Trade: Book Review Published

The World Trade Review just published my review of “The Language of World Trade Politics: Unpacking the Terms of Trade” edited by Klaus Dingwerth and Clara Weinhardt. It is a well written book that sheds light on an area of trade policy-making that is usually ignored. I posted the first page below, you can find…

Drawing Multilateralism: Everyday Diplomacy in the World Trade Organization

The essence of diplomacy is communicating and promoting national interests on the world stage. But how is this accomplished in practice? Who talks to whom? How regularly? And with what effect? The diplomatic exchanges in the World Trade Organization (WTO) have kept trade flowing and growing since the organisation’s creation in 1995. The WTO’s multilateral…

Trade and Investment Law Reading Group

I am currently co-organising a reading group at King’s College London that bridges international political economy and international trade and investment law.

No signs of sweeping WTO reform

The World Trade Organization (WTO) is in urgent need of reform. But recent proposals for institutional changes are limited in scope and primarily serve the interests of advanced economies. Developing countries should seize this opportunity to promote their own ideas on the future of the trade system.

Chapter in new Research Handbook

Our chapter on the legitimacy impasses of transnational trade governance was finally published in the Research Handbook on the Sociology of International Law.

Grundlegende WTO Reform nicht in Sicht

Die Welthandelsorganisation (WTO) muss dringend reformiert werden. Die vorliegenden Reformvorschläge dienen jedoch vor allem den Interessen der Industrieländer. Die Entwicklungsländer sollten gemeinsam eigene Vorschläge in die Debatte einbringen.

New co-authored strategy paper on trade policy

The Friedrich Ebert Foundation just published a strategy paper on the future of European and German trade policy to which I contributed as a member of its Working Group on Trade Policy. The paper is based on detailed discussions between members of the German and European parliament and trade experts. It is titled “Fair Play…

Who Supports Continental Integration? Treaty Commitment in the African Union

This posts summarises preliminary results of my analysis of treaty commitments in the African Union. The assessment is part of a research project for the German Institute of Global and Area Studies (GIGA) that explores the behaviour of authoritarian countries in the African continental integration project.

The Spaghetti Bowl: Visualising the Proliferation of Preferential Trade Agreements

The world of preferential trade agreements (PTAs) is rapidly evolving: governments increasingly negotiate on the bilateral and regional level. This activity has created a complex web of PTAs spanning the globe. Economics professor Jagdish Baghwati likened the phenomenon to a “spaghetti bowl” in the early 1990s. Since then, new waves of preferential trade negotiations have swept over different regions, leading…