Kenyan scholar, Socrates Majune has been named the winner of a World Trade Organization (WTO) award.
The 30-year-old emerged the winner of the inaugural Trade Economist Thematic Award, a new research-based competition by WTO. Majune beat 26 other nominees from different countries around the world.
This year’s theme focused on the impact of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic on trade and trade policy around the world with Majune’s policy paper on international trade being voted the best.
In his study titled The Effect of Lockdown Policies on International Trade Flows from Developing Countries: Event Study Evidence from Kenya, Majune examined the effects of Covid-19 lockdown measures on the country’s import and export business.
He looked at how the economy was affected by evaluating several products, supplies, imports, and export patterns between July 2019 and June 2020.
Coincidentally, Majune—a tutorial fellow at the University of Nairobi’s School of Economics—was working on a paper on the same topic when WTO announced the competition.
The winner of the award, which comes with a cash prize of 5,000 Swiss Francs (Sh620,000), was picked by a panelist comprising WTO economists and board members.
Through the win, Majune also made history by becoming the maiden winner of the competition.
‘‘I’m deeply honored to be the first recipient of the award which emphasizes my deep interest in international trade. It’s also a statement about the quality of teaching and training in Kenyan and African universities,’’ Majune told Nation.