Vision and Mission
The European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE) is an independent and non-profit policy research think tank. It was founded in 2006 by Fredrik Erixon and Razeen Sally.
ECIPE works in the spirit of the open society – a society that embraces the traditions and principles of free trade and economic freedom. Our work is focused on international trade, regulation, digitalisation, and other international economic policy issues of importance to Europe. We are a research-based think tank with the ambition of providing decision-makers and observers with sound economic and political analysis.
ECIPE and other similar think tanks help to provide the European debate with informed analyses and opinions about the international economy. When we started, only a few of the research centres and think tanks around Europe worked on international economic issues and fewer still had a strong focus on trade policy. None comes close to the range and quality of international economic policy analysis provided, for example, by the Peterson Institute for International Economics and the Brookings Institution in the United States.
ECIPE aims to diminish this gap with research and analysis that brings together politics, economics and law, and applies them to real-world policy-making. We believe that the progressive reduction of barriers to the movement of goods, services, capital, people and data across borders creates prosperity and improves the conditions for peace, security and individual freedom.
Informed policy research of trade and other international economic issues is as important as ever. After 1945, international commerce has become much freer. Multilateral trade liberalisation through the GATT has contributed to global growth and prosperity. Nevertheless, many barriers to international commerce remain in place. In recent years many regions have seen a liberalisation slowdown. Worse, the forces of protectionism and economic nationalism are now in ascendance: arguments against liberalisation have become more popular and influential. Such a climate demands new efforts to soberly review current policies and present independent facts-based analyses of concrete cases.
Organisation, governance and funding
ECIPE conducts policy research and publishes papers, briefs, and books. We organise seminars, conferences and roundtables on European and international trade policy, regulation, the Single Market, digital economy and globalisation.
ECIPE has a Brussels-based secretariat and employees highly qualified scholars who conduct economic research and political analysis. We have a network of non-residential Associates and Senior Fellows and offer a platform for other centres and institutes to present their research in Brussels.
ECIPE is governed by a Board of Trustees, responsible for general and financial supervision, and has an Advisory Board with highly respected academics and practitioners to advise on research projects. Currently, the Advisory Board include, among others, Bruno Maçães, former Secretary of State for European Affairs, Government of Portugal, Alejandro Jara, former Deputy Director General of WTO and Frank Lavin, former Under Secretary for of Commerce in the US Government.
Unique in Brussels, ECIPE is funded entirely by voluntary contributions from private foundations and corporations. Our base-founding came from the Free Enterprise Foundation in Sweden, and we welcome financial support from other organisations sharing our ideas in favour of an open world economic order. It is our principle not to seek or accept government funds from the EU.