LAW8554 : International Commercial Arbitration

Semester 1 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


1.       To acquire knowledge and understanding of the key legal principles and techniques involved in commercial arbitration from the domestic and international context

2.       To impart a critical analytical understanding of the general principles of the law of arbitration with emphasis upon their application in international dispute resolution

3.       To acquire knowledge and understanding of the evolving dynamic of the subject

Outline Of Syllabus

The module covers the law and practice pertaining to international commercial arbitration, the most important dispute settlement mechanism for international commercial disputes. The module provides a complete introduction to the functioning of arbitration in theory and practice. This module focuses mainly on English arbitration law, which is compared and contrasted especially with the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, with some reference to the law of other important jurisdictions. Particular attention is given to the different types of arbitral rules that may have to be taken into consideration in an international arbitration.

The module will cover a range of topics pertaining to arbitration with reference to English Law and the UNCITRAL Model Law, including the rationale of arbitration, its advantages and disadvantages, applicable laws, arbitral clauses, choice of arbitrators, powers, jurisdiction and duties of the tribunal, national courts and conduct of the proceedings, awards and challenges of awards, enforcement under the New York Convention, arbitration against the state, investment treaty arbitration, and ICSID.

The course will not deal with associated contracts, such as contracts of insurance, carriage and finance.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching72:0014:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching21:002:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study801:0080:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The module is taught through a combination of lectures and seminars. The lectures will introduce students to the key concepts and legal rules in the area that they study. The seminars will be interactive, and will be centred around analysing hypothetical situations, decided cases, and topics of current debate. They will require a significant amount of advance preparation, and the topics for each seminar will be released at the start of the academic year. Both will be supported by self-directed study, guided by an extensive and annotated reading list supplied at the start of term. The combination of these teaching method has been designed to promote analytical, argumentative and critical skills which are of critical importance to working with the law in this area.

Individual drop-in sessions will be offered to students at scheduled times in order for them to pursue individual issues in greater depth, and receive feedback on their performance.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay1A1003000 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The module focuses on comparative issues across multiple jurisdictions, and brings together a wide range of issues across doctrine, theory and practice. It is for that reason appropriately assessed through an academic essay on a set topic.

Reading Lists