Luca is the author of various works in the areas of international economic law, European law and competition law. His monograph The Definition of Subsidy and State Aid – WTO Law and EC Law in Comparative Perspective (Oxford University Press, 2009; Oxford University Press USA, 2010). is the first – and still the only - attempt to offer a conceptual framework of analysis of the various (legal, economic and political) definitional issues of subsidy in the WTO and the EU. It has been extremely well received and reviewed (more than five years since its publication, it is still generating book reviews in leading journals), and has been cited by the WTO Panel report in the China – Countervailing and anti-dumping duties on grain oriented flat-rolled electrical steel from the United States (China – GOES), WT/DS414/R, footnote 104 to para 7.86. Academic citations in WTO judicial reports are an extremely rare occurrence.
Building on conferences organized in 2008 and 2010 in Birmingham and Milan, Luca edited Microsoft on Trial: Legal and Economic Analysis of a Transatlantic Antitrust Case (Edward Elgar, 2010) and co-edited (with F. Bestagno) Challenges of Development: Asian Perspectives (Vita e Pensiero, 2010) and (with M. Trybus) The Treaty of Lisbon and the Future of the European Union (Edward Elgar, 2012).
Luca’s current research focuses on various strands. First, he is exploring the legal status of green energy subsidies in the WTO and the possible case and challenges for law reform. In this regard, he is presently working on a monograph for Cambridge University Press on the regulation and discipline of green energy subsidies in the WTO. Both the AHRC and the British Academy have supported this research with respectively a Fellowship of £63,280 (2011) and two Small Research Grant of £7,406 (2010) and £9,950 (2012). Some aspects of this research on the linkages between energy, trade and climate change, are carried out with various partners, like the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) and the Swiss National Centre for Competence in Research. Luca is in particular currently involved in two key policy initiatives on the linkages between trade and green energy. In September 2012, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) invited him to participate in the Forum on the Green Economy and Trade. In January 2013, he was appointed by the ICTSD, the Chatham House, and the Friedrich Ebert Foundation to participate as expert in the E-15 initiative, a high-profile research and dialogue process, and specifically to the ‘Clean Energy Technologies and the Trade System’.
Secondly, Luca is working more generally on the regulation of subsidies in the WTO and how it could be improved. In March 2014, he was invited by the ICTSD to be part of the horizontal task-force of the E-15 Initiative on ‘Rethinking international subsidy disciplines’ on, as subsidy expert and rapporteur. Luca is also writing with Bernard Hoekman (EUI) a commentary to the SCM Agreement for the GATT/WTO Commentaries series of Oxford University Press. In August 2015, he was awarded a British Academy/Leverhulme Trust Small research Grant to support this project (£9,850). Finally, he has started an historical project (“SHAPE”) which will explore the forces shaping subsidy laws in the XXth and XXst century. The beginning of the project found its ideal kick-off in one high-profile, brainstorming workshop organized in Birmingham in May 2015. See http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/law/events/2015/shape-workshop.aspx
Research grants and fellowships:
- British Academy/Leverhulme Trust, Small Research Grant (2015) £9,850Robert Schumann Senior Research Fellowship, Global Governance Programme, Robert Schumann Advanced Centre, European University Institute, Florence (2012-13), Euros 30,000
- British Academy, Small Research Grant (2012), £9,950
- Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Fellowship (2011) £63,820
- British Academy, Small Research Grant (2010) £7,405
- British Academy, Small Research Grant (2007) £2,890