Cornell Policy Review Associate Editor Ana Canedo sits down with Carolina Palma, PhD, discussing a wide array of topics ranging from her professional career as a trade negotiator for Costa Rica to her research interests as a professor for the Public Administration faculty of the University of Costa Rica.

Professor Palma shares insights on the new regionalism emerging in Latin America as a result of multilateral trade agreements such as the Pacific Alliance Initiative, as well as thoughtful commentary on the Trans-Pacific Partnership and trade with China. A special thank you to Dr. Palma for speaking both with the Review and the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs.

From her World Trade Institute biography: Carolina Palma graduated with honours from the law school of the University of Costa Rica, completed her LLM in Law (with honours) at the University of Munich and also obtained a Master’s Degree in Economic and Trade Law at UNED University in Costa Rica. She went back to Costa Rica to be a tenure-track professor for the International Public Law course and has been teaching since 2006 and researching for the Economics Faculty since 2010. For students, she has served as a coach and judge for the Jessup and OEA (Organization of American States Moot Court) competitions.

Her publications include the Free Trade Agreement CA-UE, Chinese Developing Zones, China’s Trade Policy Review and Food Security. She is currently researching the regulation of cross-border investment in agriculture and the case of Costa Rica in international arbitration. She is supported by her university to obtain her PhD through the extended capacitation programme at Bern University. Parallel to her academic work, Prof. Palma was a trade negotiator and chief assistant for the Ministry of Trade of Costa Rica (2007-2010). During her employment, the FTA Central America-European Union was concluded, the GSP Generalized Preferences was renewed, CAFTA-DR was implemented and she was part of the investment law arbitration team.

She has organised numerous workshops along with public events in the field of trade negotiations and has participated in conferences such as the World Economic Forum (2010). She also contributed from 2010 to 2013 to the Costa Rican Embassy to China, engaging in numerous activities and seminars for Renmin University and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and participating as a committee member of the Beijing International society (BIS).  A native Spanish speaker, she is also fluent in English and German and possesses a basic command of French and Chinese. Awards obtained: AlBan Excellence Scholarship (2006) and Swiss Excellence Scholarship (2013).

This interview was conducted by Ana Canedo and Cristian Valenzuela, with editorial assistance from Peter C. Fiduccia and Keyi Ruan. 

Ana Cañedo

Written by Ana Cañedo

Ana Cañedo is a 2017 CIPA Fellow. She earned two bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Political Science from ITAM, Mexico. Prior to Cornell, she worked as a Research Coordinator at the Human Capital Division of CIDAC, an independent, not-for-profit think tank. She then served as Project Leader for the creation...
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