Rethinking International Commercial Arbitration


Rethinking International Commercial Arbitration

Towards Default Arbitration

9781786432391 Edward Elgar Publishing
Gilles Cuniberti, Professor of Comparative and Private International Law, University of Luxembourg
Publication Date: 2017 ISBN: 978 1 78643 239 1 Extent: 256 pp
Arbitration is the normal and preferred mode for resolving international commercial disputes. It presents an essential advantage over national courts by offering neutrality of adjudication, but is currently only available where both parties have consented to it. This innovative book proposes a fundamental rethink of this assumption and argues that arbitration should become the default mode of resolution in international commercial disputes.

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This innovative book proposes a fundamental rethink of the consensual foundation of arbitration and argues that it should become the default mode of resolution in international commercial disputes.

The book first discusses the most important arguments against this proposal and responds to them. In particular, it addresses the issue of the legitimacy of arbitrators and the compatibility of the idea with guarantees afforded by European human rights law and US constitutional law. The book then presents several models of non-consensual arbitration that could be implemented to afford neutral adjudication in disputes between parties originating from different jurisdictions, to offer an additional alternative forum in the doctrine of forum non conveniens or to save judicial costs.

The first dedicated exploration into the groundbreaking concept of default arbitration, Rethinking International Commercial Arbitration will appeal to scholars, students and practitioners in arbitration and international litigation.
Critical Acclaim
‘The value of Professor Cuniberti’s book is not only in the approach that he takes, namely analysing different models of arbitration, such as foreign investment and domain name arbitrations, and drawing methodological conclusions to lay the foundations for his default arbitration model. The importance of the monograph lies also in asking questions which force us to rethink the role of arbitration in international trade and re-evaluate the benefit it has to the international business community.. . . The book deserves the attention of anyone interested in dispute resolution.’
– Petya Koycheva, International Company and Commercial Law Review

‘Arbitration is, for many reasons – one of which is neutrality – a more suitable mode of dispute resolution in an international context than litigation before a State court. Building on his seminal 2009 article, Professor Gilles Cuniberti implacably demonstrates that arbitration should be given the status of default mode, and systematically rebuts the conventional objections against such a revolutionary proposal. He does so with such talent and persuasive power that the initially sceptical, but open-minded, reader, after turning the last page, must honestly admit that Professor Cuniberti might well have convinced him.’
– Pierre Mayer, Emeritus Professor at the University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, France

‘Cuniberti’s thought-provoking book elaborates on the concept of default arbitration which he was the first to propose in a 2009 article. The idea is that, in the international setting, arbitration should be the default mode of resolution of commercial disputes because it is superior to court litigation, particularly on account of its neutrality and flexibility. This shift of paradigm has been gaining traction, but remains controversial. Cuniberti’s well-argued analysis brings a welcome breath of fresh air to the debates on arbitration, which remain extremely deferential to acquired wisdom but often fail duly to consider the evolution in the reality of international commercial relations.’
– Luca G. Radicati di Brozolo, Catholic University of Milan, Italy

‘International commercial arbitration has of late attracted vast amounts of commentary, much of it merely advocacy in favor of or against the enterprise, and all too often polemical in nature. What the field has lacked is a truly penetrating and holistic study of the challenges facing the enterprise, both its workings and its connection with other international dispute resolution regimes. Into this gap comes Gilles Cuniberti’s masterful work which deserves the attention of anyone wanting to take international commercial arbitration seriously.’
– George A. Bermann, Columbia Law School, US

‘Insgesamt handelt es sich um ein lehrreiches, zum Nachdenken anregendes Buch über ein Konzept, das seine Tragfähigkeit erst noch beweisen muss. Zwar bleibt abzuwarten, ob Default Arbitration tatsächlich einmal das Stadium eines juristischen Glasperlenspiels überschreiten und den Weg in die Wirklichkeit finden wird, doch sollte dies nicht dazu führen, sich dem Thema von vornherein zu verschließen. Das Buch verschafft einen guten Überblick über das Konzept Default Arbitration und eine Vielzahl der Fragen, die damit im Zusammenhang stehen, ohne sie erschöpfend zu erörtern. Insbesondere zeigt es auf, dass man sowohl die grundsätzliche Zuständigkeit staatlicher Gerichte in internationalen Handelssachen als auch die vertragliche Basis der Schiedsgerichtsbarkeit nicht unkritisch als unumstößliche Dogmen verstehen sollte. Schließlich setzt das Buch auch einen deutlichen, vielleicht teils zu euphorischen, Kontrapunkt zur noch immer lautstarken Kritik an der Handelsschiedsgerichtsbarkeit.’
– SchiedsVZ

Contents: Part I Why Promote Arbitration 1. The Most Suitable Mode of Dispute Resolution Part II The Decline of Consent in Modern Arbitration 2. Foreign Investment Arbitration 3. Domain Name Arbitration 4. The French Experience Part III Policy Analysis 5. The Legitimacy of Private International Adjudication 6. The Public Functions of Courts Part IV Constitutional Constraints 7. European Law 8. The Constitution of the United States Part V Models of Default Arbitration 9. The Proposed Model 10. Variant 1: Arbitration as Forum Conveniens 11. Variant 2: Ending the Commercial Judicial Subsidy Part VI Implementation 12. Indirect Paths 13. Direct Paths Index
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