The Model WTO is a simulation of WTO trade negotiations. The event has been organized by a student team from the University of St.Gallen since 1997. It is a week-long event and takes place in St.Gallen and Geneva. The 26th edition is expected to be held after Easter 2023. The Model WTO provides you with a unique opportunity to engage with more than 70 students from all over the world as well as various experts, i.e. senior WTO Members' trade diplomats, WTO Secretariat officials, academics and researchers. Next yearʹs theme has yet to be determined.
The Model WTO course prepares a small group of 12 - 14 Bachelor students for their role as chairpersons of a WTO negotiating committee in the simulation. The course extends over two semesters, Autumn Semester 2022 and Spring Semester 2023, and is taught by a senior WTO Secretariat official. It usually includes an excursion to the WTO Secretariat in Geneva.
This course is a great opportunity to acquire and practise skills in diplomatic negotiations and public speaking.
Please note that alternative arrangements, including a virtual (online) event, may need to be considered depending on the Covid-19 situation. The organisers of the Model WTO also reserve the right to cancel the event for the same reason.
Profile of Candidates
You should bring an interest in interdisciplinary study and work, and more specifically international trade policy, international trade law, international trade economics and international trade diplomacy.
As the WTO is all about governments working together to achieve common economic goals, an interest in international intergovernmental organizations like the WTO and government-to-government economic cooperation and relations is also expected.
A desire to learn about and practise international negotiations and diplomacy is necessary, as you will be expected to chair a Model WTO committee with the mandate to conduct international trade negotiations on a specific topic.
For an impression about how WTO trade diplomats see their role and contribution, see: Faces of Trade Diplomacy.
- Strong oral and written English skills.
- You have to be able to commit to two semesters, Autumn Semester 2022 and Spring Semester 2023, and cannot be on exchange during those semesters.
- Mandatory participation in the Model WTO 2023 taking place in late March or April 2023. Course participants are exempt from the Model WTO fee (CHF 380).
- Majors in International Affairs; Economics; Law; Law and Economics; and Business Administration are eligible to earn credits for this course.
Application Deadline and Documents
Please send your (1) CV, (2) TOEFL® score (if available), (3) your current grade transcript and (4) your responses to the two questions below in English to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please answer the following two questions in 3 sentences (do not write more).
1. What makes you a good candidate for the Model WTO course?
2. Why are you interested in how governments cooperate on international trade within the framework of the WTO?
The deadline for applications to join the course is 2 September 2022.
Preselected candidates may be requested to submit a short motivation letter at short notice and very soon after the application deadline. The deadline for the motivation letter will likely be 7 or 8 September 2022. There is no bidding for this course.
- Written examination [50% of final grade]: open-book; last week of the Autumn Semester 2022
- Group examination paper [50% of final grade]: Groups of two students, with each group member given the same grade. The length of the paper is 20 pages. The deadline is probably in late March with four to six weeks time to prepare the paper.
- Class attendance is expected.