Leveraging Law and Regulation for Sustainable and Inclusive Economic Development

The New Markets Lab (NML) is a law and development innovation lab dedicated to generating and disseminating data-driven research, tools, and approaches focused on equitable and inclusive design and implementation of economic law and regulation.

Separator Image

Learn how NML is leveraging data to understand legal and regulatory systems in their design and implementation

Explore NML’s Data-Driven Research

Building Empirical and Comparative Research into International Trade Law

NML’s recent study examined on-the-ground realities of how trade policy can affect Micro-, Small-, and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) across several countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Specifically, the study assessed how the potential expiration of the WTO Moratorium on Customs Duties on Electronic Transmissions could affect MSMEs in South Africa and Kenya. In addition to surveying nearly 450 MSMEs, NML conducted in depth interviews to showcase “Stories” of over 35 MSMEs, as seen in this video.

Read Our "MSME Moratorium" Report Separator Image

Enhancing Food Security and Agricultural Trade Through Legal and Regulatory Interventions

NML’s work on agricultural law and regulation focuses on assessing rules and their implementation, tracking progress based on carefully curated indicators, and working with partners to achieve lasting change. NML has created an ever-growing toolkit, including legal guides, comparative studies, case studies, training manuals, annotated comments on rules, Regulatory Systems Maps, and draft regulatory instruments, all of which are central to capacity building and policy change.

Read Article on Regulatory Flexibilities Separator Image

Scaling An Innovative Model for Legal and Regulatory Change

NML uses scenario-based training and information-sharing tools (such as Legal and Regulatory Guides) to engage stakeholders from across the public and private sectors in legal and regulatory design and implementation to generate inclusive market growth.

Read Our Legal Guide to Strengthen Tanzania’s Seed and Input Markets Separator Image

Building Capacity in Law and Development

Policymakers and regulators, negotiators, lawyers, enterprises, NGOs, and industry associations can all benefit from NML’s analysis and capacity building through interactive legal tools, ongoing partnerships, and scenario-based regulatory modules. NML’s president, Professor Katrin Kuhlmann, teaches courses on law, development, and international economic law at Georgetown University Law Center and has taught and led experiential learning courses outside of the classroom to expose students to the substance and practice of law and development.

Read Student Account of the Harvard Law School Independent Clinic Separator Image

Rethinking Trade Policy for Resilient, Inclusive, and Sustainable Development

In collaboration with the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN ESCAP), other UN bodies, and the Georgetown Law Center on Inclusive Trade and Development (CITD), NML engaged students and legal fellows in the development of two handbooks: (i) the 2021 Handbook on Model Provisions for Trade Agreements in Times of Crisis and Pandemic, and (ii) the 2023 Handbook on Provisions and Options for Inclusive and Sustainable Development in Trade Agreements. The handbooks are designed to build capacity among trade negotiators and feature legal design options for trade agreement provisions that reflect diverse national interests, incorporate fundamental trade principles, and balance the needs of different States and stakeholders.

Read Handbook on Provisions and Options for Inclusive and Sustainable Development in Trade Agreements Separator Image

Improving the Design and Implementation of Economic Law

NML’s approach focuses on the design and implementation of economic law and regulation, highlighting regulatory tradeoffs and good practices. In order to improve the implementation of economic law, NML has developed Regulatory Systems Maps (RSMs), which show regulatory processes step-by-step, highlighting pathways for making law and regulation more inclusive, fit-for-purpose, efficient, and effective. NML’s RSMs have become a useful tool for governments, businesses, and institutional partners to prioritize options for regulatory reform and weigh appropriate interventions.

View New Markets Lab’s Regulatory Systems Maps Separator Image