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Global Law and Policy for the Americas Initiative

Our Mission

The relationship between nations and the international landscape is changing.  Global Law and Policy for the Americas provides a platform in which to examine new legal frameworks for addressing global challenges in coordination with local solutions.   Specifically, it focuses on the role of the Americas in shaping global law and policy and on the ways that domestic law and policy in the different regions of the Americas connect with the global.    NAFTA renegotiations have highlighted a redefining of North America and its role in the world. New economic players, technological innovation, and environmental challenges are changing the marketplace, questioning globalization, shifting global power dynamics, and impacting the future of international law and its institutions. Law shapes society, motivates behavior, and creates incentives for action. The 20th century marked important changes in the role of law, domestic and international, for the Americas, with reemerging democracies and new markets. The Americas are rich in resources, diverse in cultures, and a source of economic power and will continue to play an important role in the future of global law and policy. GLPA considers these shifts in international law and policy and emphasizes the interplay between the global to the local.

GLPA | Houston Law

Please join us at Georgetown University Law Center’s Center for Inclusive Trade and Development for a discussion with policy makers and experts including Professor Elizabeth Trujillo at UHLC on “Rethinking World Trade 2024”

Registration link

Confusion continues over Texas immigration law

March 20, 2024 - The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has blocked Texas' new controversial immigration law from taking effect, hours after the Supreme Court allowed the law to go forward. The law lets local and state police arrest people in the country without documentation.

Here & Now's Deepa Fernandes speaks with Daniel Morales, a professor of law at the University of Houston.

Book Cover

Professor Elizabeth Trujillo recently published, The USMCA and the Environment: Setting Trends for Global and Regional Trade, in The Future of Trade: A North American Perspective (David A. Gantz and Tony Payan, eds, 2023).  This was a grant-funded project sponsored by Rice University’s Bake Institute for Public Law and Policy Center for US-Mexico and the Charles Koch Foundation.  More on this publication can be found here.

GLPA is proud to announce the Houston Journal of International Law (HJIL) Symposium Issue 45:1 that summarizes the papers and presentations from the GLPA webinar series, “Constitutionalism, Trade, Social Justice, & Sustainability in the Americas: Lessons from the 2020 Global Pandemic,“ and the follow-up webinar, “Global Challenges, Local Solutions: Supply Chains, Sustainability, and Governance.” For more information on the publication, click here.

The Introduction to the Symposium series, Global Challenges, Local Solutions: An Introduction to New Perspectives to International and Comparative Law, can be found here:

Many thanks to all the speakers and authors who participated in this event, and to HJIL for its editorial support and co-sponsorship; to the University of Bologna Department of Political and Social Sciences and its Center for Latin American Studies for co-sponsoring and co-hosting this series; to my co-host and co-author Professor Sabrina Ragone, and to the American Society of International Law-Latin American Interest Group for co-hosting the first GLPA webinar series. We hope that the research outcomes from this collaborative project will inspire more research, dialogue, and scholarship on cutting-edge topics that implicate the delicate overlap of the local with the global, impacting our region and the world today.

Elizabeth Trujillo
Mary Ann & Lawrence E. Faust Professor of Law
Founding Director, Initiative on Global Law and Policy for the America

Student Opportunities

2023-2024 Legal Internship

The Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) is seeking interns to work in the Legal Affairs & SEM Unit between September 2023 and June 2024. Interns will have an exciting opportunity to work on several submissions at various stages in the trilateral Submissions on Enforcement Matters (SEM) process under the Environment Chapter of the USMCA/CUSMA as well as on other in-house legal matters relevant to the CEC’s work as an international organization.


We are excited to announce our academic partnership with the University of Bologna, Italy. This collaboration brings together researchers from Bologna’s Department of Political Science and Social Sciences and UH Law Initiative on Global Law and Policy for the Americas for collective research on the Americas and international law. This partnership will also bring about more opportunities for faculty and students of both institutions for international exchanges, collective research and other mutually beneficial collaborations.

Learn more about our Global and Graduate Programs.