Collection Scope

Over 59,000 public documents and 300 publications of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) are accessible from this site, a digital library created in a partnership between the Stanford University Libraries & Academic Information Resources (SULAIR) and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The public documents include reports, studies, and meeting records covering a broad range of topics related to international trade in the post-war period. Each document bears a unique symbol number and the entire collection is searchable by a range of fields including symbol, date, keyword in title, keyword in title, and organization name. Subject indexing is not currently available, but project staff are collaborating with World Trade Organization (WTO) staff to identify the requirements for subject access to the collection.

The organization published documents and publications in three official languages: English, French and Spanish. The content available here includes a small number of non-English language versions. Project staff are working with the WTO in order to identify funding to support the addition of a complete set of French and Spanish-languages versions of these materials to the website.

The GATT published close to 60,000 documents between 1947-1994. Derestriction of some 10,000 of these documents has not yet occurred; hence, public access to these is unavailable. Although efforts are currently underway to review the classification status of these materials, they are not available on this website due to their status. As the classification review proceeds, project staff will add any declassified material to the website.

In addition to the documents and publications to which access is provided on this site, the project has cooperated with the WTO since 1999 to create digital versions of over 2 million pages of archival material at the WTO including, for example, its central registry files and photographic archive. At this time, all of this material—with the exception of the photographic archive—remains restricted.

A very small number of WTO documents are also included on this site. However, users of the site who are interested in WTO documents should consult the WTO Documents Online service, which contains the majority of official documents distributed by the WTO and is available in three different language interfaces: English, French and Spanish. A more detailed description of WTO Documents Online is available here.

WTO in 2005. Source: Immanuel Giel, CC BY SA 3.0 Ported