ICC events during Paris Arbitration Week and what you might have missed

  • 24 April 2018

The European arbitration community took the French capital by storm from 9-13 April with the second edition of Paris Arbitration Week (PAW). For five full days, dispute resolution professionals discussed the latest regional developments, learn best practices and expand networks at a variety of conferences, trainings and other events that took place across the city of light.

Couldn’t make it to all 11 ICC events? Here’s what you might have missed from our full programme of activities.

1. ICC Amicale

On the eve of the event week, current and past staff members of the ICC International Court of Arbitration took the opportunity to reconnect and learn about the latest happenings of the Secretariat, during the ICC Amicale.

2. ICC European Conference on International Arbitration

Welcoming more than 260 participants from over 30 countries, the second edition of the ICC European Conference on international arbitration was the first event to kick off PAW 2018 on 9 April. From dispute resolution solutions to support the Belt and Road initiative and the impact of Brexit on the international arbitration market to the mixed global view on the proposed investor-state dispute settlement reform and a glimpse of the future through blockchain and smart contract disputes, the high-level event discussed a number of hot-button topics to keep professionals up-to-date.

3. PAW Opening Cocktail    

Jointly organised by ICC, Paris Arbitration – Home of International Arbitration, Comite Francais de l’Arbitrage and the French Association for Arbitration, the PAW Opening Cocktail gathered more than 1,000 dispute resolution professionals from across Europe. The much-anticipated social event followed the conclusion of the ICC European Conference and was held at the prestigious Economic, Social and Environmental Council (ESEC) building next to ICC Global Headquarters. The cocktail was the ideal forum to develop professional networks and exchange ideas with like-minded guests.

4. ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR Spring Meeting

The ICC Commission on Arbitration and ADR held its annual Spring meeting on 10 April. Convening 430 members from 72 countries, the meeting was chaired by Carita Wallgren-Lindholm who assumed responsibility as Commission Chair on 1 January 2018. During welcome remarks, President of the ICC Court, Alexis Mourre, announced his bid for re-election which would allow Mr Mourre to continue leading the world’s leading arbitral institution for another three-year term. The day’s agenda included presentations and talks around the commission’s current task force on arbitrating climate change related disputes; measures to avoid the distortion of witnesses’; emergency arbitration; arbitrator selection by parties and counsel. The commission also approved a revised version of the ICC Report on Construction Industry Arbitrations and discussed the creation of a new task force on allegations of corruption in international arbitration.

5. ICC Institute Training on Drafting Enforceable Awards

On 11 April, the ICC Institute of World Business Law held an advanced-level training on the drafting of enforceable awards. More than 80 professionals representing 32 countries gathered at ICC’s Global Headquarters to receive best practice tips on legal drafting styles of arbitral awards and to gain expert insight into specific challenges, such as jurisdiction and applicable law. From an in-depth look at the ICC Court’s scrutiny process—a distinctive feature of ICC Arbitration—to engaging lectures, dynamic workshops and an interactive mock court session, participants are now armed with new-found knowledge and skills they’ll be able to directly put into practice.

6. ICC Russia event on cross-border insolvency, arbitration and disputes involving Russian state-owned companies

Held in the heart of Paris, just a stone’s-throw away from the Tuileries Gardens, ICC Russia organised a seminar with global law firm White & Case on 11 April. Prominent Russian practitioners in the sphere of dispute resolution touched on recent arbitration reforms in the region, the enforcement of awards in Russia, disputes involving a “high concentration of public elements” and the general attitude of Russian courts towards arbitration. The event was followed by an afternoon tea and attracted a variety of legal practitioners, including participants from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and other countries from around the world.

7. ICC Institute Meeting for members

The ICC Institute—the world business organization’s think-tank concerned with the development of international business law—convened the first of their biannual meetings on 12 April. Taking place at ICC’s Global Headquarters, the members established strategic priorities for 2019 and considered potential new trainings to further the development of professionals worldwide.

8. Breakfast debate on compliance with public policy and the enforcement of arbitral awards in Europe

On 12 April 2018, the ICC International Court of Arbitration and La Francaise International Claims Collection celebrated the 10th edition of their annual breakfast debate. The early morning session began with opening remarks by La Française International Claims Collection’s General Director Alain Grec. Mr Grec’s remarks were followed by a comprehensive lecture by Sylvain Bollee from the Pantheon-Sorbonne University. Mr Bollee explored the global view of conformity to public order under French law, stating that sources and the extent of control of the “Juge de l’annulation” are constantly evolving. The second panel—which was headed by ICC Court counsel Florence Richard—comprised Monfrini Bitton Klein Senior Counsel Claire Daams; Monfrini Bitton Klein Partner Yves Klein; Liedekerke Partner Hakim Boularbah; and La Francaise International Claims Collection Co-founder and Director Guy Lepage. The group examined the enforcement of arbitral awards in Belgium, France, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, affirming that the attractiveness of the arbitration seats—together with protection of public order—are key elements driving reforms conducted in each of the four countries.

9. ArbitralWomen Roundtable: Diversity in arbitration – where does change start?

Backed by ICC, ArbitralWomen—an international organisation aimed at promoting and uniting women dispute resolution practitioners—arranged a roundtable event on 12 April at one of the oldest and most prestigious official buildings in Paris, the Palais de Justice. Surrounded by gilded gold-bound law books, K&L Gates Counsel Valence Borgia; Carmichael Lemari Counsel Gillian Carmichael Lemarie; Castineira Partner Eliseo Castineira; Altana Partner Caroline Duclercq, SEGULA Technologies General Counsel Ian Kayanakis, ICC Court Special Counsel Mireze Philippe; and Freshfields Senior Associate Gisele Stephens-Chu each shared views on the current status of women in arbitration. From the trials of promoting diversity in the industry to preference-driven biases in decision makers’ selection of arbitrators to encouraging female lawyers to use their voice to make themselves more known, a variety of ideas and perspectives were aired with the hope of creating positive change on both an individual and collective level.

10. Colloquium for ICC Institute Members

The ICC Institute organised its annual colloquium for members on 12 April at ICC Global Headquarters. This year’s theme considered an arbitrator’s role in fixing or revising contractual terms, as there are situations where arbitrators are appointed to fix the terms of a contract rather than settle an actual dispute. Most notably occurring in the field of oil and gas to revise prices or in the field of telecommunications to fix the level of royalties according to fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms, members examined the regularity of such instances, the scope of an arbitrators’ capacity in these types of cases and how it differs from function of an expert.

11. Young Arbitrators Cruise

Wrapping up our PAW activities, the Young Arbitrators Cruise was organised on the evening of 12 April by ICC’s Young Arbitrators Forum (YAF), Comite Francais de l’Arbitrage’s CFA-40 and Paris Very Young Arbitration Practitioners (PVYAP). The scenic cruise along the Seine set the stage for the 40-years of age and under community to meet-and-mingle while reviewing the various events and discussions they experienced throughout the week. The festivities were set to the foot-tapping tunes of “Draft Punk,” —a live band made up of professionals from many of Paris’ major law firms and institutions.


Mark your calendars today for the third edition of Paris Arbitration Week, which will take place 1-5 April 2019. Click To Tweet