The World Trade Organization and Human Rights

The World Trade Organization and Human Rights

Interdisciplinary Perspectives

Edited by Sarah Joseph, David Kinley and Jeff Waincymer

This collection of essays from leading academics examines the connection between the World Trade Organization (WTO) and human rights issues, a topic which has provoked significant debate, particularly in the decade since the collapsed WTO talks in Seattle in 1999.

Chapter 1: The Trade and Human Rights Debate: Introduction to an Interdisciplinary Analysis

Jeff Waincymer

Subjects: economics and finance, international economics, law - academic, human rights, international economic law, trade law, politics and public policy, human rights


Jeff Waincymer 1. INTRODUCTION AND METHODOLOGY There has been a growing debate about the compatibility between the international trade regime and the promotion of universal human rights. In this volume we seek to analyse this relationship.1 There are two related aspects of 1 This volume builds upon earlier work in the field including F M Abbott et al. (eds) International Trade and Human Rights: Foundations and Conceptual Issues (University of Michigan Press, Michigan, 2006); Padideh Ala’i, ‘Global Trade Issues in the New Millennium: A Human Rights Critique of the WTO: Some Preliminary Observations’ (2001) 33 George Washington International Law Review 537; Philip Alston, ‘Linking Trade and Human Rights’ (1980) 23 German Yearbook of International Law 126; Thomas Cottier, ‘Trade and Human Rights, a Relationship to Discover’ (2002) 5 Journal of International Economic Law 111; Thomas Cottier et al. (eds) Human Rights and International Trade (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2005); Frank J Garcia, ‘The Global Market and Human Rights: Trading Away the Human Rights Principle’ (1999) 25 Brooklyn Journal of International Law 51; Frank J Garcia, Trade, Inequality and Justice: Toward a Liberal Theory of Just Trade (Transnational Publishers, New York, 2003); S Leader, ‘Human Rights and International Trade’ in P F J Macrory et al. (eds) The World Trade Organisation: Legal, Economic and Political Analysis (Springer, New York, 2005) 664; H Lim, ‘Trade and Human Rights: What’s At Issue?’ (2001) 35 Journal of World Trade 275; Ernst-Ulrich Petersmann, ‘From Negative to Positive Integration in the WTO: Time for Mainstreaming...