Current Developments

The International Arbitration Bill and the future of arbitrations in South Africa

“The vast bulk of Africa-related international arbitration cases are resolved in Europe.” Most treaties concluded by the Republic of South Africa (‘RSA’) do not require the exhaustion of domestic remedies before approaching an international tribunal. The case of Piero Foresti, Laura de Carli and others v. Republic of South Africa (ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/07/1) (‘Piero Foresti’) has been cited as the case that galvanised the government of South Africa to take …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionPractitioner's CornerSymposium

From curse to opportunity: Mediation of natural resource conflicts

Since 1946, at least 40 % of intrastate conflicts have been linked to natural resources. Furthermore, conflicts associated with natural resources are more likely to relapse into violence within the first five years of a peace agreement. Fortunately, an increasing number of peace processes and related agreements include natural resource provisions on a direct or indirect basis. For these and other reasons, resource-sensitive mediation and dispute resolution is becoming an …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionSymposium

Navigating International Norms in Peace Mediation

The Promise of Peace Mediation Navigating norms in peace mediation is possible through understanding what mediation can or cannot achieve. This means determining whether it is indeed the best option for third-party intervention in a given context. Mediation differs from other forms of third-party dispute settlement by emphasizing the negotiating parties’ ownership of the outcome. Mediators have limited power. They can facilitate, cajole or encourage the parties, but they have …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionSymposium

Investor-state arbitration: rationale and legitimacy

A reply to Christian Tietje Attempts to conceptualize the foundations of and crucial questions around investment arbitration are most welcome, as the field gains not only public attention, but also increasing importance for investors as well as receivers. Christian Tietje, claiming in the title that investor-state arbitration is a part of the international rule of law and, therefore, a mechanism for upholding it, touches on what may surely be called …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionSymposium

Investor-State Arbitration as Part of the International Rule of Law

Investor-state arbitration is not only the most heated topic discussed in international economic law, but it also has become an important political issue more generally. Indeed, it is amazing to see how a topic that, some years ago, interested only a handful of international economic lawyers and very few academics has emerged today as an issue on which everybody has an opinion. Moreover, there seems to be only one direction …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionSymposium

The History and Development of “A” DR (alternative/appropriate dispute resolution)

What is “A” DR? In its modern incarnation, the “A” stands for “alternative” dispute resolution, meaning “alternative” to formal court hearings, trials and formal legal proceedings. But the name is a misnomer. In most legal systems these days, most disputes and conflicts are settled or resolved in some way short of a formal trial – through an ombuds (a person who works for the government or for private industry by …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionSymposium

Strengthening the means of (international) law enforcement

Symposium on alternative dispute resolution

Today, a vast array of treaties exists, both multilateral and bilateral. They regulate almost every aspect of human interaction and cover such diverse fields as the environment, trade, outer-space, human rights, organized crime and terrorism. For example, over 560 multilateral treaties are deposited with the UN Secretary General alone and more than 2000 bilateral investment treaties exist. The majority of these treaties are concerned with standard setting, that is, the …

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