Tag Archives: book

The Vignelli Canon

A wonderful, short book of the rules (κανών: kanón, meaning a rule) of design chosen and illustrated by Massimo Vignelli and his wife Lella. Download it here. I have always said that there are three aspects in Design that are important to me: Semantic, Syntactic and Pragmatic. That is: the meaning of the design, the […]

Plimer’s Heaven + Earth


I have finally finished reading and skimming Ian Plimer’s thick book Heaven + Earth. I found it admirable for being a comprehensive and intelligent account of relevant evidence on climate change. I did not like it so much for the writing, or for the organization of ideas in some places, but that’s a quibble in light of the book’s strengths.

Prof. Plimer’s book looks like a text book (and weighs about as much), but in reality it is a piece of rhetoric. He has collated a very strong argument, based on the record of scientific enquiry, for rejecting the case—already flimsy on the grounds of common sense—for climate alarm.

Bans on the parallel import of books

Geoff Bezos and the Kindle

My submission to the Productivity Commission on their Draft Discussion paper on Parallel Importation of Books.

Dear Commissioners— Your assessment (Discussion Draft, ” Restrictions on the Parallel Importation of Books”) evaluates the cost of the Parallel Import Restrictions (PIRs) by considering their impacts on the authors, publishers and consumers of ‘trade books’; that is printed books. But you do not consider the costs that the PIRs may impose on the consumers of electronic books.

“(1) I urge you, in your final report, to consider the possibility that the restriction on access to electronic editions of books (specifically, the ‘front list’ books that are available in the US as Kindle books) is a cost imposed on Australian consumers by the PIRs.

(2) I urge you to recommend that the PIRs be abolished and that, if useful (I doubt it), the Government should increase the subsidies to ‘culture’ by directly compensating Australian authors of ‘cultural’ works for the loss of the PIRs. They should not subsidize the publishers. Nor need they subsidize foreign authors now benefiting from our PIRs (there’s nothing in the national treatment obligations of the AUSFTA that requires us to subsidize US authors).”

WTO and Developing Countries

here to open WTODC in a new window”>WTO and Developing Countries Cover page

The World Trade Organization has commissioned Inquit to write a number of publications. One of the first—in 1999—was “WTO and Developing Countries”, which described the impact on Developing Country members of the Uruguay Round Agreements and the provisions that the agreements made specifically for development.

Global Trade Advocate

download a copy of Global Trade Advocate (pdf:2.2mb)”>Global Trade Advocate is Inquit’s guide to advocacy on behalf of the global trading interests of your business or industry association. It shows you how to go about defining your interests in the trading system, how to analyze the opportunities, how to build support for your goals in the trading system and—most important—how to identify and persuade the decision-makers.

GTA contains examples of firms and associations that have achieved benefits a thousand-times greater than their investments in pursuit of their interests in breaking down barriers to trade or winning a fairer deal from the system. 

Allan Beattie, World Trade Editor for the Financial Times of London says:

“Mr Gallagher’s advice is valuable … the rewards can be huge … the case for business to pay attention to trading rules is compelling.”

Hugh Morgan AO, former Chairman of the Business Council of Australia says:

“Great assistance to business, media and educational undertakings in gaining a grounding in the International Trade activities that provide such a significant part of the institutional framework.

Andrew Stoler, former Deputy Director-General of WTO says:

“An excellent practical guide through the often confused maze of trade negotiations and agreements.  Peter Gallagher’s expert counsel is exactly what a businessperson needs to convert policy opportunities into dollars and cents.”

Ten observations about the WTO’s first decade

As of Saturday 16, there was little consensus inside the Hong Kong Conference Center as you can read from the press coverage, except that the European Community’s negotiating position is unacceptable to everyone else. The atmosphere is poisonous and the discussions, even in the smallest and most senior informal groups (the ‘green room’ meetings organized […]

“WTO: The First Ten Years”

My book, commissioned by WTO for their 10th anniversary, is now available from Cambridge University Press From the blurb “This book was commissioned by the World Trade Organization (WTO) as a factual account of the first decade of its existence. It aims to cover the principal activities of the WTO as the successor to GATT […]