Learning by Ruling and Trade Disputes

58 Pages Posted: 11 Sep 2017 Last revised: 18 Jun 2021

See all articles by Giovanni Maggi

Giovanni Maggi

Yale University; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Robert W. Staiger

Stanford University; University of Wisconsin - Madison - Department of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: September 2017

Abstract

Over the WTO years, the frequency of disputes and court rulings has trended downwards. Such trends are sometimes interpreted as symptoms of a dispute resolution system in decline. In this paper we propose a theory that can explain these trends as a result of judicial learning; thus according to our theory such trends represent good news, not bad news. We then offer evidence that the predictions of our model are consistent with WTO trade dispute data, and we take a first step towards estimating the strength and scope of court learning.

Suggested Citation

Maggi, Giovanni and Staiger, Robert W., Learning by Ruling and Trade Disputes (September 2017). NBER Working Paper No. w23774, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3035127

Giovanni Maggi (Contact Author)

Yale University ( email )

New Haven, CT 06511
United States
203-432-3569 (Phone)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Yale University - Cowles Foundation

Box 208281
New Haven, CT 06520-8281
United States

Robert W. Staiger

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

University of Wisconsin - Madison - Department of Economics ( email )

1180 Observatory Drive
Madison, WI 53706
United States
608-262-2265 (Phone)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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