One of the most important academic events of its kind, the G2 Conference annually convenes practitioners, WTO Secretariat staff and Members, and NGO stakeholders to discuss the status and future of international economic law, and its intersection with regional developments. The Conference typically alternates between Washington, D.C. and Geneva. However, due to the pandemic, we decided to move the programming online in 2021. Please find the video recordings of the G2 Conference in three parts below.

The combination of the COVID-pandemic, election of a new WTO DG, a new US Administration, as well as other developments in the world of trade, call for a reinvigorated WTO. In this spirit, we made attracting and elevating new, younger perspectives with fresh eyes and bold ideas on the WTO’s challenges and opportunities the goal of the G2 conference in 2021. Our focal point wws a three day Legal Hackathon for students from around the world, on: ‘How to Make the WTO Fit for Future Generations of Trade’. The most innovative proposals were featured on the day of the conference and can be found here.

G2 Conference: Agenda & Recordings

April 14, 2021

Welcome Remarks & Keynote Speech

Please click here to watch the recording of this part of the G2 Conference.

  • Welcome Remarks: Chris Brummer, Agnes N. Williams Research Professor, Faculty Director, Institute of International Economic Law, Georgetown Law
  • Keynote: George Mina, Ambassador and Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Australia to the WTO

Panel 1: WTO Plurilaterals – Unlocking the System, or Breaking it? 

Some WTO Members are championing deals with less than the full WTO membership as a way to make progress on issues from e-commerce to the environment, and have  suggested several legal pathways for eventually incorporating them into the WTO framework. Other Members hold such plurilateral deals to be in violation of the letter of WTO law, its spirit, or both.  This panel will discuss the legal and systemic implications of the primary approaches being proposed, and the options available to their opponents and supporters.

  • Nicolas Lamp, Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law, Queen’s University
  • James Nedumpara, Executive Director at Centre for International Trade and Economic Laws (CITEL) Jindal Global Law School (JGLS)
  • Myrto Zambarta, Head Of Unit, Directorate General for Trade, European Commission
Chair: 
  • Gabrielle Marceau, Counselor, Legal Affairs Division of the WTO; Associate Professor, Law Faculty, University of Geneva; Visiting Professor, Graduate Institute of International Affairs and Development

Panel 2: Hackathon Plenary

Please click here to watch the recording of this part of the G2 Conference.

The 3 finalist teams will be invited to present and discuss their solutions before the Jury (listed below), ahead of the final determination of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place finishers.

  • Nathalie Bernasconi-Osterwalder, Executive Director, IISD Europe; Senior Director, Economic Law & Policy
  • Gabrielle Marceau, Counselor, Legal Affairs Division of the WTO; Associate Professor, Law Faculty, University of Geneva; Visiting Professor, Graduate Institute of International Affairs and Development
  • Kekeletso Mashigo, Counsellor (Economic & Legal), South African Permanent Mission to the WTO, SA Embassy, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Yujin Kim McNamara, Partner, Akin Gump
  • Dmitry Grozoubinski, Executive Director, Geneva Trade Platform
  • Patricia Holmes, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Australia to the WTO
  • Marie Kasperek,Executive Director, Institute of International Economic Law, Georgetown Law
  • Soumaya Keynes, Trade & Globalisation Editor, The Economist
  • David Kleimann, Visiting Senior Research Fellow at Georgetown University’s Institute for International Economic Law and a member of the Executive Council of the Society for International Economic Law (SIEL)
  • Katrin Kuhlmann, President and Founder, New Markets Lab; Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown Law
  • Joost Pauwelyn, Head, International Law Department, Co-Director, Centre for Trade and Economic Integration, Professor of International Law, Graduate Institute of Geneva; Murase Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown Law

Panel 3: Agreeing on How to Disagree – WTO Dispute Settlement 2.0 

Please click here to watch the recording of this part of the G2 Conference.

The WTO Dispute Settlement system was once considered the organization’s “jewel in the crown,” but that status is at risk with the Appellate Body empty and Members increasingly looking to unilateral, bilateral, or plurilateral approaches to resolve their disagreements. In this discussion, eminent experts on international trade law will discuss the past, present and future of the dispute settlement system in light of the Biden Administration’s recently announced position, the European Union’s Trade Review and the ongoing impasse over the Appellate Body.  At the end of this session the winning team of the G2 Legal Hackathon will be announced.

  • João Aguiar Machado, Ambassador, Permanent Representative of the European Union to the WTO
  • Jan-Yves Remy, Deputy Director, Shridath Ramphal Centre for International Trade Law, Policy and Services (SRC), University of the West Indies
  • Kathleen Claussen,  Associate Professor of Law, University of Miami Law School
  • LI Yihong, Minister & Deputy Permanent Representative of Chinese mission to the WTO

Chair: 

  • Jennifer Hillman, Senior Fellow, Trade and International Political Economy, Council on Foreign Relations; Professor from Practice, Georgetown Law; Former Member, World Trade Organization Appellate Body