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Interview with Thomas Cottier

Thomas Cottier

Director, World Trade Institute, Institute of European and International Economic Law 
Professor of European and International Economic Law, University of Bern 


Thomas Cottier is Professor of European and International Economic Law at the University of Bern and Director of the World Trade Institute and the Institute of European and International Economic Law. He directs the national research programme on trade law and policy (NCCR International Trade Regulation: From Fragmentation to Coherence) located at the WTI. He is an associate editor of several journals. He was a visiting professor at the Graduate Institute, Geneva, and also currently teaches at the Europa Institut Saarbrücken, and at Wuhan University, China. He was a member of the Swiss National Research Council from 1997-2004 and served on the board of the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI) Rome during the same period. He served the Baker & McKenzie law firm as Of Counsel from 1998 to 2005. 

Prof. Cottier has a long-standing involvement in GATT / WTO activities. He served on the Swiss negotiating team of the Uruguay Round from 1986 to 1993, first as Chief negotiator on dispute settlement and subsidies for Switzerland and subsequently as Chief negotiator on TRIPs. He held several positions in the Swiss External Economic Affairs Department and was the Deputy-Director General of the Swiss Intellectual Property Office. In addition to his conceptual work in the fields of services and intellectual property and legal counselling, he has also served as a member or chair of several GATT and WTO panels.