25 Mar
13:30 - 15:30

Balancing free trade with societal values | Open Lecture with Denise Prevost, Maastricht University

Want to know if our MSc in Public Policy and Human Development programme (known as MPP for short) is right for you?  You have the opportunity as a prospective student to join an online Open Lecture from the MPP specialisation Global Governance for Development.  

Content of the lecture 
This lecture dives into an issue of particular importance in trade policy today, namely the interaction between trade liberalisation and sustainable development. It is widely recognized that development encompasses more than economic growth through trade liberalization. It also entails the promotion of important societal values and interests, such as environmental protection, labour standards, and human rights. The dire consequences of climate change and environmental degradation, and the need to mitigate them, has spurred action on national and international level that has implications for the trade regime and for the possibilities of developing countries to increase their economic prosperity. The World Trade Organization recognizes that trade liberalization is not an end in itself, but must promote sustainable development. In this lecture we will explore the exceptions in WTO law that allow Members to deviate from their free-trade obligations in order to pursue other societal values such as sustainable development, and the disciplines they impose to prevent the abuse of this flexibility for protectionist purposes. Here we see the 'balance' emerge between trade liberalisation and the regulatory autonomy of Members. 

About the speaker 
Denise Prévost is Associate Professor of international economic law at Maastricht University. She was the Academic Coordinator of the Institute for Globalisation and International Regulation (IGIR) until 1 August 2009, when she was appointed Deputy Academic Director of IGIR until 2011. Previously (2004-2007) she worked as Assistant Professor in international economic law at Utrecht University. From 1998 to 2004, she worked as a research associate in the Department of International and European Law, at Maastricht University, where she lectured courses on international trade law, the external relations of the European Union and legal English and conducted research towards her PhD. Her doctoral thesis is entitled: Balancing Trade and Health in the SPS Agreement: The Development Dimension (2009, Wolf Legal Publishers). 

In 2001, Denise interned at the Legal Affairs Division of the Secretariat of the World Trade Organization. She has also done consulting work for various international organisations, the European Commission, national bodies and industry groups. Further, she has been a visiting lecturer in several international programmes including the China Europe School of Law in Beijing, China; the Institut des Hautes Études Internationales at the University of Paris II, France; the International Trade and Investment course at the University of Padova, Italy; and the Joint CWS-WTI Academy in New Delhi, India. 

Denise studied law at the University of Pretoria, South Africa (BLC cum laude 1992, LL.B cum laude, 1994),  the University of South Africa (LLM, 2001) and Maastricht University (LL.M summa cum laude, 1998, Ph.D 2009). 

She was admitted as an advocate of the High Court of South Africa in December 1996. 

 Expertise in:  
- International trade law 
- WTO law 
- Sanitary and phytosanitary regulation