Washington College of Law Announces Center on International Commercial Arbitration

Leaders in the Field Join Center's Advisory Board



WASHINGTON, DC, Sept. 15, 2009 – American University Washington College of Law (WCL) is proud to introduce a new Center on International Commercial Arbitration this fall. The Center will provide a high-level academic forum for exchanging ideas on salient issues and current developments in the field of arbitration, expanding on the accomplishments of WCL’s International Arbitration Program, which debuted in 2004. The Center is directed by Horacio A. Grigera Naón, an independent international arbitrator and former secretary general of the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce.

“WCL has made great strides in educating the academic and legal communities in the important field of international commercial arbitration,” said Dean Claudio Grossman. “With the establishment of this Center, we will continue to explore the underpinning of this dynamic field and be a valuable resource to practitioners both domestically and around the world, while engaging the field in all its conceptual complexity.”

Center objectives include enhancing traditional and experiential academic offerings, formalizing research and publication endeavors, and expanding upon the accomplishments of the International Arbitration Program.  A new Advisory Board consisting of many of the most highly respected attorneys in international arbitration has been established.

“The Center will build on WCL’s established academic reputation as a leading educational institution in arbitration and create unique possibilities for engaging the flourishing Washington, D.C. arbitration community.” said Grigera Naón.  

The Center’s rigorous academic offerings and activities will focus on the theory and practice of international arbitration, including the resolution of international economic disputes. Practitioners are trained in the latest challenges in the field through courses, seminars and workshops taught by leading academics and practitioners. Current annual activities include:

  • Annual Seminar: The Annual Seminar on International Commercial Arbitration is a four-day intensive program that offers advanced techniques for handling an international arbitration case. The seminar is co-sponsored by the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce, the American Arbitration Association, and the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. The Sixth Annual Seminar will take place October 13-16, 2009, and will provide critical skills and practical insight into handling BIT arbitration cases primarily under the auspices of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
  • Annual Lecture: Established in 2006, the Annual Lecture offers an eminent figure in international arbitration a platform on which to share his or her ideas on novel issues and current trends in international arbitration from his or her own perspective. This year’s lecture will take place Thursday, November 5, 2009, and will feature Jan Paulsson, co-head of Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s international arbitration and public international law groups. Paulsson will address “Three Reasons Why International Arbitration Will (Probably) Survive."
  • Specialized Summer Program: Taught by leading practitioners and arbitrators, the International Arbitration Summer Program is a unique and compact three week program that addresses fundamental issues of commercial arbitration from a theoretical and a practical point of view.

For more on the Center, please visit www.wcl.american.edu/arbitration.

Center on International Commercial Arbitration


Horacio A. Grigera Naón, Distinguished Practitioner in Residence


Padideh Ala’i, Professor of Law and Interim Director, International Legal Studies Program
Janie Chuang, Assistant Professor of Law
Claudia Frutos-Peterson, Adjunct Professor/Head of Publications and Consultant Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP
Claudio Grossman, Dean and Raymond I. Geraldson Scholar, International and Humanitarian Law
David Snyder, Professor of Law, Director, Business Law Program
Perry Wallace, Professor of Law, Director, JD/MBA Program


John Beechey, Chairman, International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce

Karl-Heinz Böckstiegel, Professor Emeritus of International Business Law, University of Cologne

Bernardo Cremades, Partner, Cremades and Associates

Yves Derains, Partner, Derains Gharavi & Lazareff

Emmanuel Gaillard, Partner, Shearman & Sterling LLP

Meg Kinnear, Secretary-General, International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes

Ahmed Sadek El-Kosheri, Senior Partner, Kosheri, Rashed & Riad

Carolyn Lamm, President, American Bar Association and Partner, White & Case LLP

Julian D M Lew QC, Barrister and International Arbitrator, Chambers at 20 Essex Street

Michael Pryles, Chartered Arbitrator and Chairman, Singapore International Arbitration Centre

William K. Slate II, President and CEO, American Arbitration Association

Claus von Wobeser, Managing Partner, Von Wobeser y Sierra A.C.

Anne-Marie Whitesell, Of Counsel, Dechert, LLP