Digital and data are becoming central to trade..

Conflicts are emerging around digital trade..

What does this mean for justice in a digital world?


As issues around digital trade become more important there is need for clearer information and commentary on these issues.

What is at stake?

Speakers at the World Economic Forum

The history of the key technologies, actors and conflicts.


Trade agreements

Map of countries involved in trade agreements

The key trade agreements that seek to regulate.



Mobile phone list of applications

Details of important issue-areas and the rules shaping them



The news tracker tracks of the latest news and updates

The minor rules shaping the development impacts of digital marketplaces.
As e-commerce and platform-based trading expand across the globe, one of the major developmental claims is that digital marketplace trading might unleash small firm creativity and profits. Selling online, even …
The legality of plurilateral e-commerce agreements and its implications for “WTO2.0”
After a COVID-19 hiatus, we hope to resume publishing more regular articles on digital trade on this blog as discussions continue to expand. The WTO “Joint Statement Initiative on E-commerce” …
Updates April: OECD Digital Tax | UN Digital Cooperation | Apple tracking rules
This update shines a light on the increasing patchwork of global forums and bodies looking to govern digital and data flows. Return of the US to global governance? OECD digital …


This is the goal of this website is to provide simple and balanced information for trade negotiators, policy makers, advocacy groups, academics and wider society on issues connected to digital trade and how they will shape the global economy

  • Digital is becoming central to trade…We know that across the economy aspects of production and consumption are being digitalized. This is leading to cross-border data flows becoming important channels of trade. Data-driven and digital innovation are central to economies of the future.
  • Conflicts are emerging around digital and trade…With these changes governments are enacting policies around digital with economic objectives. Emerging digital strategies also challenge existing trade rules and create demands for new rules.
  • A lack of balance: bringing back global justice…Often talking points and ideas are being shaped by the technology industry with narrow agendas. Focus is on leading digital nations without considering digital latecomers. Focus has been on big tech without thinking of small firms and society

The site was created by Dr Christopher Foster, an academic from the University of Manchester UK. It is inspired by research undertaken by Christopher Foster, Shamel Azmeh & Jaime Echavarri from 2015 to the present