Looking to embark on a rewarding career in international trade? Then you have come to the right place. The Master of Advanced Studies in International Law and Economics (MILE) programme is designed for students and young professionals who wish to broaden their knowledge of international trade and investment in the fields of law, economics and political science.
Master's Programme (MILE)
Be a MILE ahead!
Why the MILE
What makes the MILE programme unique is the interdisciplinary approach to the study of international economic governance.Professor Peter Van den Bossche, WTI Director of Studies
Established in 1999, the Master of Advanced Studies in International Law and Economics (MILE) is the flagship programme of the World Trade Institute. It is one of the world’s leading programmes of advanced studies in the field of international trade regulation and has close ties to the WTI’s research portfolio. The programme uniquely combines a multidisciplinary perspective with a strong applied focus. In addition to our resident faculty, we bring in the world’s leading trade experts from law firms, international organisations, policy research institutes and top universities.
What we offer
- A one-year, intensive graduate programme (can also be taken part-time)
- Teaching and guidance from world-class scholars and practitioners - recruited from leading universities, international organisations, think tanks and global law firms
- Highly applicable real-world knowledge and the latest research developments in international trade and investment regulation, and economics
- A vibrant alumni network with over 500 members worldwide
- Strong networks and mentoring programmes to help students secure internships and entry-level positions
What you bring
- The MILE is designed for students and professionals with a background in law, economics, international relations or political science, who wish to embark on a career in international trade and investment
For information about living and studying in Switzerland, click here.
MILE courses and faculty
The MILE curriculum is interdisciplinary, combining law, economics and political science. You will study the global economy, international macroeconomics and applied economics, trade facilitation, competition law, investment law, dispute settlement, trade remedies and much more. The WTI attaches great importance to its teaching methods. Courses consist of lectures and case studies, offering students opportunities for classroom discussions, group workshops, and individual research.
External participants interested in taking single weekly courses can do so on an à la carte basis, as a part of our Winter and Summer Academies. Visit the Winter and Summer Academy page for a current list of à la carte courses, course descriptions, and fee information.
* Indicates a weekly course.
FIRST SEMESTER (17 September to 21 December 2018)
Global Economic Governance Seminar Series
17 September – 21 December
Every session features an expert lecturer.
Please visit out Events page for a current list of seminars.
SECOND SEMESTER (21 January to 26 June 2019)
Seminar on Trade Economics
18 February – 24 May
Lecturer: Joseph Francois
Global Economic Governance Seminar Series
21 January – 26 June
Every session features an expert lecturer.
See the Events page for a current list of seminars.
We are accepting applications on a rolling basis for the MILE programme starting in September 2019.
To be considered for admission to the Master of Advanced Studies in International Law and Economics (MILE) programme at the World Trade Institute, we require you to have completed, at minimum, an undergraduate degree.
The majority of our students have a background in law, economics or political sciences. If you have a background in a different field, you are nonetheless encouraged to apply. A graduate degree in a related field and/or work experience in the field of international trade give you a bonus when the selection committee evaluates your application.
- To apply for the MILE programme, and for details of our requirements, please click on the MILE Application Form (Word document) on the right. IMPORTANT: Please follow the submission guidelines in the application form.
- To apply for a weekly course, please visit the Winter and Summer Academy page. Here you will find a current list of à la carte courses, course descriptions, and fee information.
Please send your complete application by email or by mail to World Trade Institute, University of Bern, Hallerstrasse 6, 3012 Bern, Switzerland. Incomplete applications will not be processed.
English language requirements
The MILE programme is taught exclusively in English and you need to arrive at the WTI with a level of English that allows you to fully benefit from the courses. In particular, your level of English needs to allow you to express yourself effectively in and outside the classroom, deliver on weekly writing assignments and adequately cover a weekly reading load of up to 200 pages.
When evaluating your application, the selection committee pays close attention to evidence of your proficiency in English. As is common for graduate programmes, you are required to submit objective test scores of one of the accepted tests listed below:
Test Minimum Score
TOEFL ibT 100 points or above
TOEFL Paper 600 points or above
IELTS 7.0 or above
Cambridge CPE C or higher
The following applicants are exempt from submitting test scores:
- Native English speakers
- Students with an undergraduate and/or graduate degree from an institution in the USA, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia or New Zealand, where English was the primary language of instruction and the degree was awarded no longer than five years ago.
You may apply for exemption from submitting test scores if you are:
- A student with an undergraduate and/or graduate degree from an institution where English was the primary language of instruction and the degree was awarded no longer than five years ago,
- A student who has completed at least one year of study in an English speaking country and at an institution where English was the primary language of instruction immediately prior to joining the MILE programme.
Please contact us if you are unsure of your exemption status and we will be glad to help. However, please be advised that exemptions from the language requirement are rarely granted. Important: Independent of your exemption status, you are required to fill in the section on English language in the MILE application form and submit a two-page essay in English as part of your application.
Tuition and registration fees
- Tuition for the MILE programme is 21,000 Swiss francs for both full and part-time studies.
- Tuition for single weekly courses can be found on the Winter and Summer Academy page.
Tuition for the MILE programme covers all courses, master’s thesis supervision, a range of extracurricular activities, and several trips to Geneva with visits to the WTO and other international and non-governmental organisations. Tuition does not cover travel costs, accommodation, health insurance, or any other expenditures incurred during your stay in Switzerland.
Tuition payments are not required until you have been accepted to the programme. You may benefit from either one of the following two payment methods:
- A 5% discount is applied if you pay your entire tuition fee prior to the first day of the programme (September).
- Alternatively, the first instalment (1/3 of your tuition fee) is due prior to the first day of the programme (September), the second instalment (1/3 of your tuition fee) is due prior to the first day of the second semester in January and the third instalment (1/3 of your tuition fee) is due prior to the first day following the spring break (April).
- No discounts apply to tuition paid in instalments.
Application for the MILE programme is free. A one-time, non-refundable registration fee of 200 Swiss francs is required upon admission to the programme. We will provide you with bank details once we confirm your admission to the MILE programme.
Any charges incurred during transfer of the tuition fee or registration fee must be borne by the applicant.
Partial tuition waiver
The WTI offers a limited number of partial tuition waivers to outstanding candidates. Candidates pre-selected by partner universities of the WTI also benefit from a partial tuition waiver. Partial tuition waivers are in principle for the amount of CHF 3,000.
All MILE applicants will be considered for financial aid upon request. Please fill out the form on the right and submit it together with your application. Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for other sources of funding.
MILE structure and regulations
The MILE is a non-consecutive Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) conferred by the World Trade Institute, University of Bern. The MILE programme counts for 90 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System Points).
Course work accounts for 75 ECTS and the mandatory master’s thesis is awarded 15 ECTS.
Regular course attendance is required from mid-September until the end of June, with the master’s thesis being researched and written over the summer. The programme can also be taken on a part-time basis within three years.
The MILE begins with a foundational semester during which students are given a solid basis in international economic law, international micro- and macroeconomics and global political economy. The second semester consists of courses based on lectures and case studies that deliver an in-depth analysis of relevant topics in international trade and investment.
As part of many of the MILE courses, students are regularly given writing assignments to be completed within a 12-hour time frame. These assignments are designed to prepare students for real world scenarios, and reflect what is expected of professionals working in the fields of international trade and investment.
The MILE programme culminates in a challenging yet rewarding moot court exercise – a simulation of a fictitious trade dispute between two countries in front of a panel composed of top WTO law experts.
The WTI internship programmes provide financial and/or other support to WTI master's students who wish to do an internship upon completion of their studies.
John H. Jackson Internship Programme
The John H. Jackson Internship Programme was set up to honour the legacy of John Jackson, the most influential academic of his era in the field of international trade law and policy. Prof. Jackson was a long-term friend and supporter of the WTI. Established in close consultation with his family, the Programme offers financial support to one WTI master's student each year to pursue an unpaid internship at an NGO or public institution. During his or her internship, the student will be expected to work on a multidisciplinary project relating to trade and/or investment law and policy.
Luzius Wasescha Internship Programme
Named after the late Luzius Wasescha, former Swiss ambassador to the WTO and long-term Chair of the WTI Board, the Luzius Wasescha Internship Programme allows one WTI master's student per year to pursue an unpaid internship at an international organisation, Geneva-based diplomatic mission, non-governmental organisation or law firm active in the field of international economic law and policy.
Thomas Cottier Internship Programme
The Thomas Cottier Internship Programme was set up to honour Thomas Cottier, the founder and first Managing Director and Director of Studies of the World Trade Institute (WTI). This Internship Programme allows one WTI master’s student per year to pursue an unpaid internship at an international organization, diplomatic mission, non-governmental organization or law firm active in the field of international economic law and policy.
Geneva Internship Support Fund
Funded by Pierre Sauvé, Senior Trade Specialist at the World Bank Group in Geneva, and WTI faculty member, the Geneva Internship Fund offers financial assistance to one deserving WTI master's student per year to pursue an unpaid internship at a Geneva-based international organisation, diplomatic mission or non-governmental organisation active in the field of international economic law and policy. Eligibility for financial support is contingent on a candidate’s selection to an unpaid internship in Geneva subsequent to completing WTI course work, financial need, overall academic performance at the WTI, quality of participation in WTI courses taught by the sponsor and propensity to laugh heartily at all his jokes. Students interested in being considered for financial assistance should send a short motivational message to Pierre Sauvé at email@example.com by June 15th. Funding decisions will be announced annually at the Closing Ceremony of the MILE and TRAIL+ programmes.
Internship opportunities at international law firms and organisations
Other internship opportunities to well-qualified WTI graduate students include:
Students at the WTI can look forward to a range of extra-curricular activities during their time in Bern. In September, students are invited to join the Director of Studies for a walk down the Gurten Mountain, one of Bern’s iconic view points, followed by a welcome-apéro.
Students also have the opportunity to attend the WTO Public Forum and the UNCTAD World Investment Forum in Geneva, both of which are excellent platforms for networking and getting significant insights into the world of trade law and investment.
In-house, we organise an annual table football competition in which students, professors, researchers and staff members alike can participate and compete against each other. The competition involves a preliminary round, a semi-final round and final round.
In addition, Bern has some noteworthy public events and traditions scattered throughout the year which will undoubtedly add to a positive experience during your time here. More information can be found on www.Bern.com.