International ArbitrationInternational Arbitration

School of Law
International Arbitration
Summative Assessment 2 – Reflective Journal
Word count: 2177
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In analysing the student’s personal experience, preferred learning method and independent
research concentration, the use of a reflective journal provides an opportunity for the scholar
to self-evaluate himself or herself on the learning experience while studying a specific
module. The reflective journal focuses on the lectures provided for the International
Arbitration subject in the year 2021.
Week 1: Introduction to Arbitration and Methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution –
Matteo Zambelli
In approaching the first lecture on the topic of Arbitration and Methods of Alternative
Dispute Resolution, I felt the necessity to prepare accordingly due to the novelty of this
topic. The provided materials available on blackboard on the overview of international
arbitration sufficiently prepared me in familiarising myself with the theme and the various
institutions worldwide
1. In this same way, the lecture discussion offered an historical part, a
distinction between Arbitration and Litigation and more information relating to when to use
arbitration. I found the second part of the discussion on the distinction between arbitration
and litigation beneficial as it offered a comparative element which made it easier to
assimilate including the Arbitration’s contractual nature. Additionally, the information
relating to the use of arbitration helped to fully grasp when should it be used however, and
more importantly it provided the international aspect of its use in arbitration vs litigation
which results in understanding that there is no uniform practice or procedure when used in
international arbitration due to various forms that international disputes take on. In awaiting
the next lecture, I decided to undertake some additional reading as this first lecture
succeeded in the further development of my curiosity.
Week 2: The Arbitration Agreement – Matteo Zambelli
The discussion of week two focused on one element discussed in week one regarding the core
of Arbitration: The arbitration agreement. The explanation on the arbitration agreement was
relatively simple although the provision of the in-depth account exposed the complexity
involving the different requirements in order to make an Arbitration agreement valid under
the New York Convention in addition to the various views of countries. When approaching
the agreement clauses subtopic, I encountered some difficulty with the identification of the
required balance within a specific clause. Even though the provided practise exercise helped
at first, I continued to require more practice when drafting an Arbitration agreement.
Moreover, in the continuance of improving my ability to draft such clauses, watching the
video provided by SIAC on drafting international arbitration agreements was very beneficial
as it highlighted the additional details to keep a close to delivered in a practical way. After
practising on the drafting section specifically over the next several days following this
lecture, I succeeded to develop my attention detail applied on the drafting of arbitration
1 Alan Redfern, Martin Hunter, Nigel Blackaby, Constantine Partasides QC, Redfern and Hunter on
International Arbitration,
(Sixth edition, Oxford University Press, 2015).
Week 3: Law Applicable to Substance and Procedure – Matteo Zambelli
The lecture on the applicable law to substance and procedure is relatively complex in
essence, which impact on understanding to which degree it interacts with other sets of law. In
fact, the choice of law applicable to the substance and the choice of law applicable to the
procedure may interplay depending on the chosen country law. This interplay becomes more
complex as it is relatively important to consider the choice of the governing law of the
arbitration agreement as the validity of the same will be affect by as well as the kind of law
that will apply in enforcing the award which usually results to be the law of the seat.
Moreover, in the absence of choice of law, in the UK and the EU the two sets of regulations
that applies are Rome I and Rome II but mainly Rome I with regards to the contractual
relationship and Rome II for tortious relationship. After spending additional time to
assimilate the interplay and their impacts through some more review and reading was
beneficial in the digestion of the application of Rome I and II.
Week 4: The Arbitral Tribunal – Matteo Zambelli
The discussion on the issues relating to the arbitral tribunal addressed on the process of
commencing an arbitration and the focus on the criteria relevant in the choice of arbitrators
provided me with a clearer process of arbitration. In fact, the relevance of the appointment of
arbitrators originates with various effects on the tribunal’s exercise of power. As addressed in
this lecture, the tribunal is only authorised to use its procedural rights if it is the single
arbitrator; otherwise, the tribunal is not complete until the specified number of arbitrators is
appointed under the arbitration agreement; which results in the tribunal has no capacity to act.
However, the unilateral appointment of sole arbitrators is invalid and if the parries have
reasonable doubts as to his or her impartiality or independence in his or her decision-making
which can be challenge by the parties. Additionally, the validity of procedures providing for
the nomination of the tribunal from a unilaterally selected panel would depend on the exact
procedure as set out in the agreement balancing the considerations of party autonomy and
neutrality of arbitrators. As a result, this discussion leaves me with a fairly simple
explanation despite the application of such procedure to countries that enforce it in similar
ways yet different in the requirement of disclosing proof of being non “guilty”.
Week 5, 6, 7: Jurisdictional issues in international arbitration, Arbitration Procedure
and Evidence, Interaction with domestic courts during arbitral proceedings – Matteo
The lecture on jurisdictional issues in international arbitration very significant as it operates
in accordance with the arbitral tribunal covered in the previous lecture. In fact, week four
discussion on the issue that the tribunal has not been properly constituted also represents a
jurisdictional issue. Jurisdictional issues have a great significance as it can affect several
aspects of any award made by the tribunal as well as increasing time and costs by slowing
down the process which can be used as a strategy by parties. Moreover, the discussion
provided a very clear explanation on the divergences of countries on the recognition ruling,
for instance, the concept of kompetenz-kompetenz supporting the principle that the tribunal
should rule on its own jurisdiction. Moreover, the second part of the lecture, the discussion on
the requirements respecting to how to raise a jurisdictional challenge and the instance of
resisting enforcement provided a more practical approach as it gave insights on the

possibilities an enforcement ruling can have which prepares me in identifying the different
stage of jurisdictional issues and their causes. The most challenging part of this lecture was
that at an international level, countries interpretation differs thus the need to react accordingly
is significant as well as the importance of the due diligence takes a greater importance in this
Arbitration Procedure and Evidence
The discussion on the arbitration procedure and evidence is to a certain degree a continuance
lecture on jurisdictional issues as for discussing the different procedure of each proceeding
involved in an arbitration. I particularly enjoy this type of lecture as it englobes key element
of the topic which gives a greater understanding as well as practical possibilities that help in
defining the strategy to be used by the provision of the relationship between the institutions
with the court and/or tribunal. Moreover, last section of the discussion offered a greater
sense of the financial aspect and its potential repercussions which raises awareness to us
(students) that is essential in the ability to properly assess the overall arbitration procedure.
Interaction with domestic courts during arbitral proceedings
As previously discussed in week five and six on jurisdictional issues and arbitration
procedure, the interaction with domestic courts during arbitral proceedings is one of the key
challenges as domestic law differ to some degree country to country. The approach taken in
week seven focussing principally on the interaction with domestic courts during arbitral
proceedings was very simple and straightforward as it adopted a before-during-after
arbitration method. The several principles applied prior the arbitration proceedings are not to
be considered lightly as it may be time-bar issues arising out of the stayed proceedings.
Furthermore, in some countries, courts have the authority to issue an anti-suit injunction
prohibiting a party in breach of an arbitration or jurisdiction agreement from initiating or
continuing with foreign court proceedings. However, the issuance of an anti-suit injunction
may be subject to limitations on the national courts which varies from country to country,
the example of the US and the EU. Although, the amount of information made the
discussion difficult to understand, the provision in the discussion on the after arbitral
proceeding between Arbitration and Litigation was beneficial with regards to challenge of an
award, freezing injunctions and third-party funding which also are covered in Litigation.
Week 8 & 9: Challenges to arbitration awards, Arbitration in Practice – Matteo
Zambelli & Greg Fullelove (Osborne Clark LLP)
The discussion on the challenges to arbitration awards was relatively well structured and easy
to comprehend following week five and seven as it provided sufficient key element in
preparation to week eight. In fact, the provision of the key concepts on the process following
the attribution of an Arbitration award made me understand perhaps in-depth explanation on
the implications that challenges to the arbitration awards have as well as under which
instruments it is suitable to proceed to a challenge. Moreover, the provisions of the
comparative example among France, Switzerland and Germany were interesting to analyse
the divergences that exists.

Furthermore, week nine’s lecture provided a practical version on the concepts covered prior
to week eight by Greg Fullelove from Osborne Clark LLP. The end of the discussion became
more interesting on the impact of Covid 19 on international arbitration which involved
moving toward remote hearings, (also used prior the pandemic), although it presented some
difficulties for arbitrators to interrupt and ask questions as the nature of remote hearings gives
a chance to parties to consult their counsel before answering questions. I find this approach
complete in terms of the different aspects discussed both theoretical and practical.
Week 10 & 11: Specialist arbitration – Matteo Zambelli & Yarik Kryvoi
The lectures on week ten and eleven focused on different types of arbitration which is subject
to certain industry. The discussion involved the construction, maritime, sport and energy
industries. The explanation was quite straight forward however, the involvement of the
various regulatory institutions made the concept difficult to grasp. The additional readings on
the different characteristics of maritime arbitration, construction, sport, and energy were very
beneficial as it provided furthers knowledge that makes the application of arbitration on these
industries “special”. The section of arbitration of financial disputes was perhaps more of my
interest as it provided advice on the regulatory body, the New York Convention towards the
enforcement of an award which is resulting to be challenging due to the number of
contracting states, thus, leaving a limited number of exceptions in this doing. The second
section on this topic considered the notion of investment treaty arbitration which was quite
new to me as well as encountering the comparable difficulty involving the use of bilateral and
multilateral investment treaties when approaching the discussion on the various types of
arbitration discussed in week ten. Nevertheless, the approach on this topic by Yarik Kryvoi
was somewhat challenging as I did not fully grasp these concepts in its entire content, yet it
provided help in assimilating these concepts.
Week 12 & 13: Remedies. Multi party arbitration, Arbitral Awards, Recognition and
Enforcement – Matteo Zambelli
The discussion on the remedies in international arbitration provided with an in-depth
explanation of the two existing legal systems (civil law and common law) on damages. The
divergences in both views on the recognition of damages thus in restricting the recoverable
damages. I found this complexity in the system to be somewhat challenging although it
allows parties to choose wisely when choosing the seat of the arbitration agreement. In fact,
the explanation provided on the recognition emphasis the importance of the choosing the seat
as it impacts nearly in total. Furthermore, the lecture on the arbitral awards, recognition and
enforcement was quite beneficial as it completed the knowledge touched on in week eight.
Although the discussion was more of a theoretical type, it provided different explanation as
well as solutions when managing different instances.

In conclusion, pursuing the module of international arbitration allowed me to improve my
knowledge on this topic as well as improving my analytical skills at a legal level. Despite the
various challenges and difficulty encountered during the course of the module, I learnt a lot
on the degree of complexity arbitration have at an international level. As a result, this module
immense contributed to a greater learning progress in reaching the goal set with respect to
understanding and performing as part of the degree of International Banking and Finance