International trade has become increasingly important over the past few decades as both developed and developing economies have lowered legal barriers to the cross-border flow of goods and services, and transportation costs have declined.
For developed economies, trade has heightened issues related to harmonizing regulatory, health, and labor standards across countries. For developing countries, the issue of how international trade can foster or hinder economic development remains a central topic. For both sets of countries, the increasing amounts of cross-border flows of both people and capital pose difficult challenges.
The La Follette School provides students with tools to understand the economic factors that underpin international trade, immigration, and foreign direct investment, as well as the theories of how economies develop. In addition to teaching, faculty members conduct internationally recognized research to inform economic development policies as well as international economic policies.