Trends In International Construction Arbitration

Speaker: James G. Zack – Director, Navigant Consulting, Inc

Date: December 13th Tuesday

Time: 01:00 PM EST | 10:00 AM PST

Duration: 90 Minutes

Product Code: 300188

Level: Intermediate

Key Take Away

This webinar will enable you to know the current trends in international construction arbitration law with respect to choice of law, choice of seat, and choice of arbitral institutions. Also get exposed to the true time and cost of international construction arbitration and gain insight into the choice of legal counsel and arbitrators.


International arbitration is a transnational dispute typically involving disputes between parties from different nations often performing work in yet another nation.

A UK contractor constructing an ore processing facility in a sub-Saharan African nation on behalf of a Canadian minerals company, files a claim for UK£1.45 million and seeks arbitration when the project owner refuses to settle is an example of an international arbitration.

As the world’s economy has become more globalized, more corporations are working internationally. Over the past two to three decades disputes on construction projects have become larger, more complicated and more common.

Research indicates that arbitration is the preferred dispute resolution mechanism for international corporations rather than transnational litigation. As the number of arbitration case filings has increased so has the number of arbitral institutions (which now number at least 28) and the seats of arbitration. Perhaps in reaction to growing criticism of the process, there has been and continues to be other changes concerning international arbitration.

Why Should You Attend

Contractors bidding/ negotiating or working on an international construction contract are most likely bound by law of the contract to some form of international arbitration – under an international arbitral institution’s rules; in an overseas location; based on the governing law of a foreign nation; and with little opportunity to appeal an arbitral institution.

Likewise, contractors in this situation may also find that they need to retain legal counsel other than the law firm that they typically use. If contractors are involved in negotiation of an international contract they and their legal counsel decisions will have to be made on the choice of law, the choice of arbitral institution, the choice concerning the seat (location) of the arbitration proceedings and, perhaps, even that language of the arbitration proceedings. Each of these decisions has consequences concerning the cost of arbitration, the process and procedures involved in an arbitration, and many others. All need to be taken into account when decisions concerning international arbitration are being made.

Gain insight into developing trends concerning transnational litigation including:

  • The growth in appellate rights
  • The expansion of discovery
  • The trend toward informal and interim dispute resolution measures
  • The growing methods to expedite proceedings

Areas Covered In This Webinar

  • Corporate dispute resolution policies favor seat of arbitration
  • Virtually all arbitral institutions report a growth in case filings year after year
  • In-house legal counsel does not use retained legal counsel but seek specialized counsel
  • In-house legal counsel is remarkably consistent on top influences for selecting arbitrators
  • In-house counsel is also consistent on their choice of governing law contract
  • Despite 75 arbitral institutions globally, 3 dominate the field
  • There are two favored seats of arbitration but some regional centers are gaining in popularity
  • International arbitration is no longer faster or cheaper than litigation
  • A high percentage of disputes are settled prior to issuance of an arbitral award
  • Very few participants have to appeal an award for judicial enforcement
  • A majority of international corporations would grade and report on arbitrator performance
  • Confidentiality of arbitration remains one of the strongest selling points for arbitration

Learning Objectives

  • Learn about the current status of international construction arbitration and the decisions that must be made concerning arbitration
  • Examine and learn about some recently identified game changing trends concerning international arbitration and what they may mean for contractors and their legal counsel working abroad

Who Will Benefit

  • Owners performing Projects in the International Arena
  • Legal Counsel advising Clients concerning International Arbitration
  • Design Professionals and Construction Managers working on International Projects
  • Contractors and Subcontractors performing International Projects

Speakers Profile

James G. Zack, Jr., CCM, CFCC, FFA, FAACE, FRICS, PMP, is the Executive Director of the Navigant Construction Forum – the construction industry’s global resource for thought leadership and best practices on avoidance and resolution of construction project disputes globally.

Formerly, Executive Director, Corporate Claims Management for Fluor Corporation, a $24 billion/year EPC with offices and projects worldwide.

Previous to that, Vice President of Pinnacle One and Executive Director, PinnacleOne Institute and Senior Construction Claims Consultant with CH2M HILL, Inc.

With 40+ years of experience working on construction projects he is a recognized expert in mitigation, analysis and resolution or defense of construction claims.

Mr. Zack has made construction claims presentations and been involved with claims throughout the United States, Australia, Canada, Egypt, Chile, China, England, Guatemala, Germany, India, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Mexico, Peru, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa, Tatarstan, The Netherlands, The Philippines, Trinidad and Tobago and Venezuela. He has been involved in more than 5,000 claims and has been designated as an expert witness in mediation, arbitration and litigation.

Mr. Zack is a Fellow of AACE International and the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS). Mr. Zack is a Certified Forensic Claims Consultant, a Certified Construction Manager and a Project Management Professional.

Mr. Zack is a nationally known author, speaker and trainer concerning the management, mitigation and resolution of construction claims on public works projects.

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