1st Edition

The Multilateral Trading System and Human Rights
A Governance Space Theory on Linkages

ISBN 9781138280014
Published September 22, 2017 by Routledge India
294 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations

USD $160.00

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Book Description

This book contributes an original theory to understanding human rights and international trade. It offers the ‘governance space’ framework for analysing the linkages and normative relationships between the multilateral trading system (MTS) and human rights regimes. Drawing upon key case studies, the author identifies connecting strands as also gaps in linkage issues. He further examines the ‘right to development’ approach to resolve tensions between these two regimes and demonstrates how the approach may be the most appropriate road map to finding sustainable solutions in balancing human rights and equitable free trade in a complex globalised world.

Presenting new legal analyses informed by current debates drawn from international organisations – the World Trade Organization, United Nations, International Labour Organization – governments, civil society and academia as well as global commitments such as the Sustainable Development Goals, the book proposes a systematic and holistic policy intervention.

This timely and transdisciplinary text will be of great interest to academics, students and scholars of human rights, international trade, international law, development studies, public policy and governance, economics, politics and international relations. It will also be useful to policymakers, think-tanks, human rights advocates, professionals, lawyers, civil society organisations, non-governmental organisations and trade experts.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.  List of Abbreviations.  Introduction  1. A ‘Governance Space’ Theory for Analysing Linkages  2. The Normative Hierarchy Debate and its Distractions  3. The Disputed Role of the Dispute Settlement Body  4. WTO and the Shrinking of Governance Space  5. WTO and the Permissive Environment to Abuse Governance Space  6. WTO and the Limiting Environment to Use Governance Space  7. The Way Forward: The Right to Development Approach  8. Conclusion.  Appendix: List of Cases.  Bibliography

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Mihir Kanade is Head of the Department of International Law and Human Rights at the United Nations–mandated University for Peace (UPEACE), headquartered in Costa Rica, and Director of the UPEACE Human Rights Centre. He holds an LLB from Nagpur University, India, and master’s and doctorate degrees from UPEACE. He is an adjunct faculty at Universidad Alfonso X El Sabio, Spain; Cheikh Anta Diop University, Senegal; and Long Island University, USA. He serves on the International Advisory Board of the International Bar Association on the topic of Business and Human Rights. He also coleads an educational project with the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on promoting the right to development. Prior to his pursuit in academia, he practised as a lawyer at the Bombay High Court and the Supreme Court of India.


‘The Governance Space theory is a significant contribution to the complex study of trade, globalisation and human rights.’

Juan Carlos Sainz-Borgo, Dean, United Nations-mandated University for Peace (UPEACE), Costa Rica

‘A compelling case for a right to development approach to WTO and human rights linkages.’

Makau Mutua, SUNY Distinguished Professor, University at Buffalo School of Law, New York, USA