Should American Economic Policy Embrace Free Trade?: A Debate

November 09-09, 2022
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Should American Economic Policy Embrace the Principles of Free Trade?

The conservative movement has long been divided over questions of trade. The end of the Cold War was thought to have ushered in an epoch of global free trade and “rules-based order,” made possible by American military power and strong international institutions like the World Trade Organization and the World Bank. Moreover, globalization and technological innovation has integrated global markets at a torrid pace. However, the rise of global competitors such as China have raised new questions about national economic policy, which resulted in tariffs and new trade deals during the Trump era, reinvigorating the free trade debate on the Right. Join ISI in a debate over these perennial considerations as free market stalwart and Professor of Economics Julia Norgaard debates the Coalition for a Prosperous America’s Jeff Ferry, moderated by Nate Hochman. The debate will begin at 6:30pm at the Fluno Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison as part of our Diana Davis Spencer Debate Series, and co-sponsored with our partners at the Center for the Study of Liberal Democracy. 

Julia Norgaard

Dr. Julia Norgaard is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Pepperdine University where she runs a faculty research seminar and an economics reading group. Her research interests, among other topics, include the internet darknet and judicial institutional interventions in developing nations. Dr. Norgaard is passionate about teaching her students to view the world through an economic lens and researching forms of private governance. She enjoys spending time exploring outdoors, adventuring to different parts of the world, and brewing beer. Dr. Norgaard is an avid rock climber and beach volleyball player.

Jeff Ferry

Jeff Ferry is Chief Economist at the Coalition for a Prosperous America (CPA), a bipartisan organization supporting US manufacturing, family farming, and a return to broad-based US prosperity.  Ferry is an economist, author, and former technology executive.  In 2019, the CPA economics team won the Mennis Award from the National Association for Business Economics for a paper, Decoupling from China: an economic analysis of the impact on the U.S. economy of a permanent tariff on Chinese imports. Before joining CPA, Ferry was a marketing executive at SIlicon Valley technology companies including Nortel Networks and Infinera. Ferry believes that the key to equitable economic growth lies in the development of growth industries including simultaneous development of innovation and manufacturing. In his spare time, Ferry enjoys road cycling, chess and French history. He holds economics degrees from Harvard and the London School of Economics. 

Nate Hochman

Nate Hochman is a writer at National Review and a 2021-22 Robert Novak Fellow at the Fund for American Studies. His work has appeared in print and online in The American ConservativeCity JournalThe Claremont Review of BooksNational AffairsNational ReviewThe New York Times, and numerous other outlets. He was a 2021 Publius Fellow at the Claremont Institute, a 2020 ISI Honors Scholar, and a 2021 Collegiate Network Journalism Fellow.

Register Today!

Use the form below to sign up for our free trade debate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison! Email Tom Sarrouf at with questions or concerns.