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The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) has commissioned a working group, with delegations from many industrialized and developing nations, to reform and update the UNCITRAL Model Law on Procurement of Goods, Construction and Services. The working group is currently reviewing reforms on a number of fronts. This essay focuses on three areas of reform in particular - electronic communications, electronic reverse auctions, and unrealistically low bidding - to gauge whether lessons from the UNCITRAL debate may be useful for reform in the U.S. procurement system. As the essay reflects, the international debate surrounding UNCITRAL reform does in fact yield many lessons for U.S. policymakers. Indeed, the analysis suggests that the U.S. system may be at a point where it would be irresponsible not to consider comparative lessons from reforms abroad, to ensure that U.S. procurement policy draws thoughtfully upon lessons learned from other procurement systems around the world.

GW Paper Series

GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 211; GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 211