Rigorous and remarkable counsel, arbitrators and academics are living and practicing beyond the centers of international arbitration. There are large, medium, and boutique firms, as well as solo practitioners, actively advancing international arbitration and public international law in non-traditional venues in Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.
The World Arbitration Update (WAU) will update the global community on key and novel topics of investment and international commercial arbitration, and public international law in a decentralized forum.
By the end of the 1990s, and even by the end of the 2000s, it may have been possible to keep up to date individually by directly digesting the few investment arbitration awards and main publicly disclosed international commercial arbitration awards. Out of approximately 3,300 investment treaties in force, 1,138 have been invoked in investment arbitrations. As those investment cases have led to 225 awards rendered between 2011 and 2020, and as the use of international commercial arbitration has also reached new heights during the last decade, WAU will provide an international arbitration update focused on key investment and international commercial issues with global and regional impact.
The WAU panels will follow a dynamic format where a presenter will first provide an update of the issue that the panel will address, including relevant treaty and international customary norms, as well as case law. An open discussion by the panelists, including practitioners, counsel for investors, counsel for States, arbitrators, officials of international organizations and arbitration centers, and academics, will then follow. After each panel, there will be a networking space in breakout rooms for panelists and WAU attendees to meet and interact.
WAU connects different regions with the global community aiming to decentralize and further expand international arbitration and public international law. At WAU, practitioners, States, private parties, arbitrators, international organizations, academics and students have the possibility to engage with each other and nourish the conversation on investment and international commercial arbitration, while being members of a forum that integrates the world through connectivity and precise updates.
The first edition of WAU is being held virtually linking different regions by video conference during a five-day period from 11 to 15 October 2021. During these five days, there will be 15 panels and networking virtual events.
On behalf of WAU, its circles of supporting firms, organizations, experts, panel speakers and moderators, we welcome the global community, newcomers, and experienced practitioners alike to the first edition of the World Arbitration Update.
José Antonio Rivas & Ian A. Laird