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Special Topics: Afta Nafta USMCA and Sustainability




2020 Fall

About This Class

This seminar provides students the opportunity for in-depth research and analysis in a developing area of multi-national law. After a political and legislative process that began in 2017, the expiring North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), in effect since 1994, has been replaced by the United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA) finally adopted by the three party states in 2020. The new Agreement is scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2020, if all parties can complete detailed implementation measures in the shadow of COVID 19.

The seminar begins with a brief overview of NAFTA and USMCA. Students would then prepare an AWR paper summarizing one of the essays in Hoi L. Kong and L. Kinvin Wroth, eds., NAFTA and Sustainable Development (2015; paperback, 2018) (copies to be provided). The papers would describe the effect of USMCA on the NAFTA issues considered in the 2015 essays and critique the USMCA result. Course papers may meet writing requirements of specific VLS certificates and degree programs. Professors Kong and Wroth are planning a Fall workshop to produce scholarly papers that would lead to a sequel to the 2015 volume. Those papers of sufficient quality and substance may be considered for the new volume.

The initial basic plan for the course is as follows: Weeks 1-3—overview of development and scope of NAFTA/USMCA and introduction to sources. Weeks 4-12: meetings with individual students to develop topics and review drafts per the AWR requirements. Weeks 13-14: Brief oral presentations of draft papers by individual students to the full class.

T 3:35 PM-5:10 PM; On-campus

Class Code



Writing, Research, and Analysis