We are truly grateful to all those persons who have submitted answers to the survey. It will remain open until March 13, 2013. If you haven’t taken the poll yet, please do share your experience. You will contribute to the knowledge-building of the worldwide arbitration community. An analysis of the results will be published in…

A uniform regulation of substantive, procedural or ethical aspects of international commercial disputes through intergovernmental cooperation has proven to be an unachievable goal or hardly a goal at all. Nonetheless, while national laws are widely used as framework for international arbitration, a number of initiatives have emerged aiming at creating intrinsically international rules (soft law…

It is not uncommon to see the losing party of an ICSID arbitration filing a frivolous request for annulment merely to engage the opposing party in settlement negotiations. Another frequent abuse of ICSID’s annulment mechanism is to attempt to re-litigate the merits at the annulment stage. An annulment proceeding under the ICSID Rules typically takes…

A brief history Arbitration has been a part of the laws of El Salvador for more than a hundred years. The Constitution of 1983 clearly states in Article 23 that every citizen of the country has the right to terminate his or her civil or commercial matters through arbitration. July 2002 marked a dramatic change…

Occasional articles, postings, etc come out which discuss the lack of female representation in international arbitration. Perhaps possible reasons are suggested, perhaps only statistics given, but it is still clearly an issue. Beyond talking about it – how can we actually help the situation? In an article from June 2009, Michael Goldhaber noted that in…

Empirical research shows that modern law students, at least at post-graduate level, wish to have some options to learn something about the skills of ‘lawyering’. Students often say that they want to have more than just the letters ‘LLM’ after their names. They pay substantial tuition fees to obtain these post-graduate degrees, and they wish…

In a decision dated 14 June 2011 and published on 7 July 2011, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court dismissed an appeal to set aside an arbitral award holding that the right to the appointment of an expert by the tribunal is not violated where the respective request was not made in a timely manner and…

[Editor’s Note: Upon hearing the results of the Vis competition, I invited members of the winning team to do a blog post about their experience. Below are the reflections of the members of the University of Ottawa Vis team on winning the competition.] It’s nice when hard work pays off. It’s even nicer when five…

In a decision dated 8 December 2009, published on 13 June 2010 (case 4A_446/2009, published as 136 III 107), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court held that persons acting as board of directors of a company that subsequently became insolvent cannot rely on an arbitration clause contained in the articles of association of that insolvent company…

In two decisions both dated 11 January 2010, published on 16 April 2010 (cases 4A_256/2009 and 4A_258/2009), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court dismissed two appeals regarding the irregular constitution of an arbitral tribunal by stating that the complainant failed to sufficiently substantiate his allegations. Background In 2006, two ICC arbitrations were initiated. They had the…

In a decision dated 11 February 2010, published on 29 March 2010 (case 4A_444/2009), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court dismissed an appeal against a tribunal’s decision that it had jurisdiction over a request for declaration that damages are owed due to the violation of an arbitration clause. The Supreme Court dismissed the appeal because it…

Art. 207 of the Lisbon Treaty defines the new common commercial policy of the European Union, and states that it shall furthermore relate also to “foreign direct investments”. This provision has the appeal of an outright earthquake, given that the field of foreign investment, and in particular investment treaties, has always been the exclusive realm…

The ABA Journal has an interesting article on the Americanization of international arbitration. There’s nothing particularly new to our readers in this article. It’s a theme that my friend and colleague Tom Stipanowich has written about extensively. I’ve written a bit about the subject as well. But the fact that the story is being told…

Constructively, commercial arbitration is a judicially recognized and an enforced method of dispute resolution in the UAE. Via Article 203 (5) of the Civil Procedure Law (1992), if the parties have agreed to refer a dispute to arbitration, an action on that dispute cannot be brought before the courts. So let us assume for present…

Handicapping investor-state arbitration cases is a tough business. Indeed, it’s difficult to predict when decisions will come down – much less what they will say. The following somewhat-hastily-cobbled-together list constitutes my best guess as to the 10 most notable awards which may come down in 2010. I won’t hazard a guess as to what’s in…

The concept of “moral damage” as long been recognised at international law. Article 31 of the International Law Commission (“I.L.C.”)’s Articles on State Responsibility provides that a State must make full reparation for any “injury” caused to another State by an internationally wrongful act and defines “injury” as “any damage, whether material or moral, caused…

In a decision of 25 August 2009 (4A_160/2009), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court held that where a claimant by piercing the corporate veil can assert a contractual claim against the majority shareholder, all rights and obligations from the respective agreement, including the arbitration clause, become binding on the majority shareholder, thus precluding the jurisdiction of…

Earlier this year, the Hong Kong Court of First Instance ruled that, in future, when it hears unsuccessful attempts to resist enforcement of arbitral awards under the New York Convention, it will “normally consider” awarding costs on an indemnity basis (i.e., in full, regardless whether they were reasonably incurred). This was a bold pro-enforcement statement…

The relationship between human rights and investment law is all the rage these days in academia. It seems like every week I come across a PhD student or a young academic who is tackling some aspect of the topic. But, while there are many scholars and writers looking to bridge the two fields, it’s rarer…

Summary In a decision of 6 October 2009 (4A.596/2008), the Swiss Federal Tribunal granted revision of a final international arbitral award that was influenced by fraud. This is the first time since the entry into force of the Federal Statute on the Federal Tribunal in 2007, and only the second time since the entry into…

In a decision of 23 June 2009 (4A_62/2009), the Swiss Federal Supreme Court held that the right to be heard is not violated where an arbitral tribunal bases its decision on a written submission of a third party and the parties to the proceedings had enough time to comment on such written submission.By letter of…

There is a lingering perception amongst the international arbitration community that English courts tend to be more interventionist in relation to arbitration proceedings and awards compared to some of their continental counterparts. In reality, English courts are much less interventionist than some imagine, despite provisions such as section 69 of the Arbitration Act 1996 which…

While litigation and arbitration both entail binding adjudication, the traditional functions of judges and arbitrators diverge in fundamental respects. While judges resolve individual disputes, they also serve a number of secondary functions. For example, in the process of deciding cases, they also supply guidance to parties in future disputes, uphold the public interest, and contribute…

For many years, no broad international consensus emerged on the existing protection for foreign investors as a result of differences of approaches between developed and developing States. As a result of this perceived lack of established customary principles, States concluded thousands of bilateral investment treaties in the 1990s for the promotion and the protection of…