What if Facebook, as a result of its recent negative publicity, had the opportunity to file a request for arbitration against Cambridge Analytica? A key principle of international commercial arbitration is its maintenance of confidentiality, but would the public interest in such an arbitration justify greater transparency? The afternoon panel of the first day of…

The Cambridge Arbitration Day (CAD), an annual arbitration conference organised by the Cambridge University Graduate Law Society, took place on the 3rd of March 2018, in Cambridge, United Kingdom. The event was preceded by the Young Practitioners’ Event organised with ICC Young Arbitrators Forum on the 2nd of March 2018, which brought together students and…

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…

On 22 March 2017, with minimal fanfare, the Civil Law and Justice Amendment Legislation Bill 2017 (“2017 Bill”) was introduced into the upper house of the federal Parliament. Buried within this omnibus Bill were four proposed reforms to the International Arbitration Act (IAA), renamed as such in 1989 when Australia was one of the first…

Last week GAR released the shortlist for its 2017 award for “best innovation by an individual or organization”. What is notable about this year’s shortlist is that of the ten innovations on the list, six directly address transparency and/or diversity in international arbitration. From an online directory of African arbitration practitioners, to the launch of “Dispute…

The tug-of-war between transparency and confidentiality was a subject of lively discussions at the 2017 Vienna Arbitration Days. Vienna Arbitration Days is Austria’s leading arbitration conference. Every year, it brings together arbitration practitioners and academics from around the world to discuss ADR developments. The presentations and panel discussions are followed by the “World Café”, which…

2016 was an important year for international arbitration. Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales challenged the legitimacy of international arbitration, while supporters such as former Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia (Robert French AC) came forward to defend its coexistence with commercial courts. Several institutions such as ACICA, SIAC and KCAB updated…

New years are a great opportunity to take stock and to prepare for future developments, despite the obvious difficulties in predicting what the main trends will be. This is also the case for 2017. Looking back to 2016 there are two topics that immediately stand out: gender diversity and transparency. Both topics were subject to…

There has been a lot of attention paid to the various innovations in the new SIAC Rules 2016 such as the possibility of an early dismissal of claims under the new Rule 29. One of the changes to the Rules which has generally been overlooked is that they now require consent of the parties and…

On 26 June 2015 Italy commenced inter-state arbitral proceedings by serving on India a notification of dispute under Article 287 and Annex VII, Article 1 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (“UNCLOS”); both States are Parties to UNCLOS. In Italy’s submission the dispute concerns an incident approximately 20.5 nautical miles…

The Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce began the new year by announcing two interesting and even bold innovations. The ICC Court will now, according to the ICC’s own press release, “publish on its website the names of the arbitrators sitting in ICC cases, their nationality, as well as whether the appointment…

by Esmé Shirlow (Assistant Editor for Australia & New Zealand)   Gabriele Ruscalla has recently observed that “transparency has become a fundamental principle in international adjudication”. The transparency paradigms governing different types of international adjudication are, however, far from uniform. Discussions of transparency in international arbitration typically begin, for example, from a distinction between commercial and investment treaty disputes. As Cristoffer Nyegaard Mollestad explains…

On 24 June 2015, the Australian Productivity Commission released its eighteenth Trade and Assistance Review 2013-14. The Commission is an independent research and advisory body, with statutory authority to report annually on the economic impacts of Australia’s international trade policy. As readers of this blog may recall, in previous years the Commission’s Review has influenced…

On 17 March 2015, the UN Convention on Transparency in Treaty-Based Investor-State Arbitration was opened for signature. So far, nine countries have signed the treaty (among them, Canada, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States). The Convention will enter into force six months after the first three instruments of ratification have been deposited…

The following thoughts are written aware of the fact that a blog is personal and informational and not a substitute for an academic article. In this spirit the thoughts expressed here are, while fundamental in many respects, also preliminary and tentative in some others. The quest for more transparency in international (commercial and investment) arbitration…