Schiefelbein Global Dispute Resolution Conference – recap

As part of our long-running tradition of posting ADR conference summaries, below is a summary of the Second Annual Schiefelbein Global Dispute Resolution Conference at Arizona State.  Mark your calendar now for next year’s conference, scheduled on Friday January 15, 2021.  As always, we are happy to post ADR conference summaries on the blog.  Send them to any of the of the contributors, and we’ll see that it gets posted.


The Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law’s Lodestar Dispute Resolution Center recently held the Second Annual Schiefelbein Global Dispute Resolution Conference on Jan. 17, 2020, underwritten by Les Schiefelbein. Attendees, participating in person and online, were treated to discussions from a global cadre of arbitrators, academics and other top minds in international dispute resolution.

The conference opened with the presentation of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit’s ADR Education Award by Judge Andrew D. Hurwitz. Art Hinshaw, professor and faculty director of the Lodestar Dispute Resolution Center, was honored to receive the award on behalf of the College of Law for the second time. ASU Law Professor Victoria Sahani and Les Schiefelbein then introduced the following keynote lecture and expert panels.

Investor State Arbitration: Smart Remedies and Bold Predictions

International Arbitrator and Attorney Ucheora Onwuamaegbu (Arent Fox) delivered this year’s Schiefelbein Global Dispute Resolution Lecture on the present and future of “smart remedies” in investor state arbitration. Mr. Onwuamaegbu argued that the large pecuniary remedies, sometimes exceeding one billion dollars, are not serving the interest of justice or the needs of the parties and other tailored remedies. He then discussed “smart remedies” and their role in being implemented in addition to or in place of monetary awards.

Cybersecurity in Global Dispute Resolution

This panel discussed the cybersecurity resources for attorneys, arbitrators, and arbitration institutions, and highlighted the need for better awareness of cyber threats. Three panelists were members of the International Council for Commercial Arbitration’s (ICCA) working group that authored the ICCA’s 2020 Cybersecurity Protocol for International Arbitration – those panelists were Mark Morril, arbitrator, MorrilADR; Brandon Malone, Brandon Malone & Company, Scottish Arbitration Centre; and Micaela McMurrough, partner, Covington & Burling. Also on the panel was Eric Tuchmann, senior vice president, AAA-International Centre for Dispute Resolution, who brought an institutional perspective from the American Arbitration Association.

Calming the Waters: International Water Dispute Resolution

ASU Law’s own Professor Rhett Larson had the opportunity to moderate an all-star panel of international water experts. Headlining this panel was Chilean Ambassador Ximena Fuentes Torrijo, the national director of state borders and boundaries for the Republic of Chile, who discussed the fascinating Silala River case – a transboundary water dispute between the Republic of Chile and Bolivia. The panel also featured Professor Shafiqul Islam, director of water diplomacy, Tufts University; Christina Leb, senior counsel, The World Bank; and Mara Tignino, faculty, University of Geneva. They discussed how water is different from all other resources, how to determine which stakeholders are the most appropriate ones to engage in the dispute resolution process, and the fact that increasing the supply of water can either exacerbate or mitigate a dispute.  This wide-ranging panel shared the perspectives of governments, NGOs, academics, industry leaders, and tribes regarding disputes involving water.

Innovation in International Arbitration Institutions

Attendees got to hear directly from some of the biggest institutional players in international arbitration. Representatives of institutions across Asia, Europe, North America, and the Middle East discussed innovation, competition, and cooperation in international arbitration institutions. Speakers included: Claudia Salomon, partner, Latham & Watkins and vice president, International Court of Arbitration; Christian P. Alberti, chief of ADR, Saudi Center for Commercial Arbitration; Sue Hyun Lim, secretary general, KCAB International; Arne Fuchs, partner, McDermott Will & Emery and member, German Arbitration Institute; and Eric Tuchmann, senior vice president, AAA-International Centre for Dispute Resolution. The audience learned that institutions cooperate far more often than they compete in a variety of arenas.

Resolving International Sports Disputes

Kenneth Shropshire, Adidas distinguished professor of global sport and CEO of ASU’s Global Sport Institute, moderated the final panel of the day on international sports disputes. The panelists included Ray Anderson, vice president, University Athletics for ASU; Jeffrey Benz, arbitrator, JAMS/4 New Square; Despina Mavromati, attorney, SportLegis; and Louise Reilly, arbitrator, Bar of Ireland. These experts discussed what it is like to resolve disputes through various processes, including the NFL Commissioner’s office, the Court of Arbitration for Sport, and the watchful eyes of passionate sports fans.

The Second Annual Schiefelbein Global Dispute Arbitration Conference was a great success thanks to the incredible slate of speakers, student volunteers, and of course, the dedication and enthusiasm of Les and Linda Schiefelbein. Next year’s conference will take place Friday, January 15, 2021 at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law.

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