17 Oct 2023
Brown Bag Seminar, 16:00 - 17:00, Silva Casa Auditorium, World Trade Institute, Hallerstrasse 6, Bern, Switzerland OR Online

Brown Bag Seminar: "Inventing the future: Is the WTO Government Procurement Agreement a tranformation tool?"

Marc Steiner, Judge at the Swiss Federal Administrative Court, joins us at the WTI for the first Brown Bag of fall 2023.


The revised WTO Government Procurement Agreement (2012) is one of the most future oriented plurilateral WTO treaties because of its integrated or holistic view on trade policy. It openly addresses governance and corruption prevention issues as aim and purpose of the treaty. And it's explicitely stated therein that some leeway for green public procurement is undisputed. So what could the future of government procurement look like from a WTO perspective?

The intention of this brown bag lecture is threefold:

  • First of all the WTO Government Procurement Agreement is – at least according to the speaker – one of the rare real WTO success stories which deserves more attention than it normally gets amongst scholars and also inside the WTO.
  • Secondly the regulation of public procurement is one of the “best practice” examples of what (not only) Prof. Thomas Cottier describes as multilayered governance.
  • Finally (public and private) supply chains are a giant lever in terms of every credible climate policy. Lesson to learn: Public Procurement is not anymore a somewhat exotic topic reserved to technocrats of either sexes, but an essential ingredient of every “green” or climate policy concept.

About the speaker

Marc Steiner holds a Master of Law from the University of Basel and is admitted to the bar. He has been appointed as a Judge to the Swiss Federal Administrative Court in 2007 (2nd Division, primarily in charge of economic matters including public procurement and competition). His comparative approach has been stimulated especially during two internships at the ECJ (1996 and 2008).

Furthermore, Marc Steiner was invited to act as an expert during the public hearing of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament on "Modernisation of Public Procurement" (title of the presentation: "Sustainable Public Procurement – Legal Background"; 24 May 2011). In September 2015 he was invited as a speaker to the WTO GPA Symposium (Session 3: Ensuring the continuing relevance of the GPA: the New Work Programmes of the GPA Committee and related policy considerations) and in February 2017 to the WTO Symposium on Sustainable Procurement. Marc Steiner also contributed to the Climate Law and Governance Day 2019 in Madrid (COP 25) speaking on "Sustainable Public Procurement - A Paradigm Change ?".

We strongly encourage you to attend this event on-site. In case you cannot be present in person, you can use the following Zoom link to tune in virtuallyhttps://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAlcumoqzkiHtfI2VozuR8mN5yoIVRa4yYM 

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