Since 1923, The American Law Institute, a private organization with more than 4,200 lawyers, judges, and professors as members, has sought to influence American and transnational law by recommending principles and rules that contribute to social and economic progress. The law of world trade, still in an early stage of development, will benefit from analysis by distinguished experts. For that reason, the ALI has sponsored books describing and constructively criticizing all the important decisions rendered by the Appellate Body of the World Trade Organization since 2001. This volume, the sixth in our series, considers decisions issued in 2008.
The subjects of the legal disputes discussed in this year's volume seem abstruse and sometimes amusing: bananas, Thai shrimp, upland cotton, and so forth. But an economically integrated world must have coherent, predictable, and fair rules governing trade. In just its second decade, the WTO has made progress, but its work can only be helped by careful study.
The six volumes analyzing WTO decisions are only one part of the ALI's effort to contribute to the law of world trade. In 2008, we published The Genesis of the GATT, by Professors Douglas A. Irwin, Petros C. Mavroidis, and Alan O. Sykes. Teams are now at work on two volumes that we expect to publish in 2011: one on the treatment of border instruments in the GATT and one on the National Treatment provision of Article III of the GATT.