Long before the now-popular phrase “pale, male, and stale,” leading arbitrators were instead often referred to as a “club,” a “cartel,” or even a “monopoly.” Those references were meant metaphorically, even jokingly. The irony is that they turn out to hold important truths that are promiscuously intertwined with the pale-male-stale moniker. To understand both, we…

On 22 March 2019, the Dutch Government released the text of the new model Netherlands BIT. Its idealism has been applauded: the new model prioritizes gender and regional diversity as well as the United Nations sustainability goals. Yet, what would the effect be of some of the model’s provisions on Foreign Direct Investment (‘FDI’)? For…

Arbitrators under the Crossfire While investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) was created with the purported goal of depoliticizing investment disputes, it is currently at the centre of heated political debates. Investment arbitration follows the commercial arbitration paradigm, with disputing parties playing a direct role in the composition of the tribunal. This is perceived as a tool…

The issue of unilateral appointment of a sole arbitrator by a party has been in the spotlight since the Supreme Court of India’s (“SC”) decision in Perkins Eastman Architects DPC & Anr. v. HSCC (India) Ltd. (“Perkins”) on 26 November 2019. This case largely puts the issue to rest by rendering unilateral sole arbitrator appointments…

Since my last article on this Blog on problems concerning ad hoc arbitration in Armenia, new legislative developments have offered an almost complete solution to the issues previously discussed. At the same time, such legislative developments in Armenia have given rise to new unresolved questions which will be explored in this article.   First Issue:…

The dilatory tactics of some claimant parties in conducting arbitration proceedings can often be frustrating and can result in unnecessary costs and expenses. In the judgment of Jaks Island Circle Sdn Bhd (“Jaks Island”) v. Star Media Group Bhd (“Star Media”) and AmBank (M) Berhad (“AmBank”) [Originating Summons No.: WA-24C(ARB)-11-02/2018] issued in 2019, the Malaysian…

Disputes, particularly arbitration, has been predominated by the old pale male. Diversity, though a hot topic, is something that the arbitration field is still striving to achieve. What many would like to see is that all people, male or female, are appointed whether as an arbitrator or a counsel based on their credentials. However, as…

  A common concern for arbitration practitioners in Africa is that when it comes to African seated arbitrations, African practitioners are underrepresented. The African Arbitration Association (AfAA) was set up as a combined vision of practitioners in the region to create a platform that would encourage and create more opportunities for greater representation of African…

On 27 March 2017, the Secretary-General of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (“PCA“) designated an appointing authority in an OIC arbitration by applying the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, despite the absence of any reference to these Rules in the OIC Agreement. This decision, which concerns a pending case, DS. Construction v. Libya , could mark the…

The endeavours of the ICC go beyond the definition of an arbitration institution; it is indeed one of the most important agents of cultural integration, incubator of diversity and best arbitration practices. A true manifestation of this is the ICC Young Arbitrators Forum (YAF); a global space for the young arbitration community which provides networking opportunities…

Introduction Section 11 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act of India, 1996 (the Act), demonstrates in detail the procedure for appointment of arbitrators. It empowers the court to examine the existence of an arbitration agreement while deciding the application for such appointment. The gravity and significance of such proceedings is vast, in both domestic and…

Participants at this year’s Dubai Arbitration Week gathered for the ICC conference hosted by Al Tamimi & Co on 14 November 2018. The conference featured a lively roundtable discussion on the subject of “Arbitrator Disclosure – Local Flavour or International Standards?” chaired by Nadia Darwazeh. The panel comprised practitioners from across the MENA region and…

Party-appointed arbitrators have recently been the subject of much debate in the arbitration community. There are those who see the ability to ‘choose’ an arbitrator as one of the fundamental pillars of arbitration. For others, it is a time- and cost-consuming exercise leading to potential conflicts and an increased likelihood of arbitrator challenges, both of…

Party Appointed Arbitrators and the Drive for Diversity Over the last 8 years, BCLP’s International Arbitration Group has conducted a number of surveys on issues affecting the arbitration process.  In 2017 the survey focused on the issue of diversity [Diversity on Arbitral Tribunals: Are we getting there?] and in 2018 on the issue of party…

This post, which continues the topic considered here and here, discusses the main issues to consider when choosing arbitration to resolve smart contracts disputes, and lists a number of red flags that emerge from a survey of white papers on arbitrating smart contract disputes prepared by the tech community. (1) The Form of Smart Contract…

In the midst of the second edition of the Paris Arbitration Week, Jeantet hosted, on Thursday 12 April 2018, a roundtable on the topic “Arbitrating with States in CEE & CIS”. The speakers of the roundtable were: Cosmin Vasile (Zamfirescu Racoti & Partners), Yas Banifatemi (Shearman & Sterling), Davor Babić (University of Zagreb), Yasmin Mohammad…

The afternoon session at ICCA Sydney Conference 2018 on “Party Autonomy in Choosing Decision-Makers” was moderated by Prof. Dr. Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler and had the insightful contributions of Alfonso Gómez-Acebo, Audley Sheppard QC, Natalie Y. Morris-Sharma and Ruth Stackpool-Moore. The session commenced with Prof. Dr. Kaufmann-Kohler underscoring the importance of maintaining party autonomy in international arbitration….

On the heels of a year that has seen the rise of populist nationalism, skepticism of multilateral trade agreements and calls to tighten in some ways the flow of people across borders – perhaps most visibly in the United States and across Europe, but with manifestations elsewhere – many communities saw a retreat from international…

As on May 1, 2017, 60751 cases were pending in the Indian Supreme Court. Likewise, as per the data available, a total of 41,53,957 cases are pending in the twenty-four High Courts in India. The rate at which these cases are disposed, for various reasons like the vacancies for the position of judges, inefficient procedures,…

In April 2010, Professor Jan Paulsson delivered his inaugural lecture as holder of the Michael R. Klein Distinguished Scholar Chair at the University of Miami School of Law where he expressed the view that the practice of unilateral appointments (or nominations) of arbitrators is a moral hazard which should be removed. This lecture sparked debate…

By Mirèze Philippe Special Counsel at the Secretariat of the ICC International Court of Arbitration Founding Co-President ArbitralWomen Member of the Pledge Steering Committee The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and should not be regarded as representative of, or binding upon ArbitralWomen and/or the author’s institution. The Equal Representation…

Introduction Saudi Arabia has changed dramatically in the past two decades, and many of those changes have potentially positive implications for international arbitration. As a crucial starting point, the Saudi government has focused intense attention and devoted vast resources to diversify the country’s economy, most interestingly by investing billions of dollars to develop the education…

Claudia Pechstein, 44, is a well-known speed skater – she has won 60 medals at international championships and at the Olympics since 1992. However, the media coverage on her seven year juridical battle against a two year suspension imposed on her for a disputed doping rules violation has put her into the spotlight even more…

In a ruling of earlier this month (see CFI 017/2015 – Emirates NBD Bank PJSC v. Infospan Gulf Inc., ruling of the DIFC Court of First Instance of 3rd April 2016) H.E. Justice Ali Al Madhani, one of the UAE-national resident judges of the DIFC Courts, sitting in the DIFC Court of First Instance, found…