Policy and Practice Research Lab

Initiative on International Economic Integration

PI: Jeffrey Bergstrand (Finance, Mendoza College of Business)

The Initiative on International Economic Integration examines issues surrounding United States free trade agreements (FTAs), with the goal of developing a framework and process for influencing trade policy and restoring trade liberalization through new agreements.

Since 2017, post-World War II trade policy liberalizations have been dismantled and trade protectionism has grown, despite increasing evidence that FTAs positively affect member nations. Evidence shows that FTAs increase living standards for those in member nations, strengthen weak democracies, spur similar agreements among other nations, and reduce conflicts between member nations – all goals in keeping the Kellogg Institute for International Affairs’ research themes of democracy and human development.

Led by Faculty Fellow Jeffrey Bergstrand, a Finance professor at the Mendoza College of Business and a concurrent professor of economics at the University of Notre Dame, IIEI will, over the course of its three-year grant, develop a working group of Notre Dame social scientists that includes economists, political scientists, and sociologists. It will also engage a global network of leading academics, policymakers, and think tank officials, and eventually hold working group discussions and conferences, hosted by the Kellogg Institute and the Keough School of Global Affairs in South Bend and in the Keough School’s Washington, DC, office.


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