The Service Economy: Understanding Sectoral Differences in Patterns of Lobbying for Trade in the US

Date/Time: Wed 06 Dec / 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Location: Menzies Building 11 Room N302

School of Social Sciences (SoSS)

Politics and International Relations Seminar Series

The Service Economy: Understanding Sectoral Differences in Patterns of Lobbying for Trade in the US

Despite the size of the services sector and the growth of services trade, the trade politics literature devotes surprisingly little attention to these ‘invisibles’. We document here that the services sectors are highly active in the politics of US trade agreements and, in comparison with goods-producing industries, are much less likely to show evidence of industrial disagreement. We explain this undifferentiated support for trade agreements by focusing on the US’s stark comparative advantage in services, and its long-standing open attitude towards services imports and investment in comparison with its trade partners. Service sectors have little to lose from reciprocal trade agreements, and much to gain. The services sectors are therefore key players in America’s pro-trade coalition, in part explaining our present era of wide open global integration.

Leonardo Baccini (PhD, Trinity College Dublin) is an assistant professor in the department of Political Science at McGill University. Before joining McGill University, he was an assistant professor at the London School of Economics and a research fellow at Princeton University and New York University. His research interests are in the area of international political economy and comparative political economy. He is the author of Cutting the Gordian Knot of Economic Reform: How International Institutions Promote Liberalization (Oxford University Press, 2014) and of several articles published or forthcoming in leading journals. Information on his publications and working papers can be found at

Wednesday 6th December

2:00pm – 4:00pm

N302, Third Floor
Menzies Building, 20 Chancellors Walk
Clayton Campus

For more information, please contact Paul Muldoon on 9905 2972.

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