For as long as I remember, ever since I started my practice in international arbitration, the name of George Bermann has been a hallmark. At first, as a respected scholar in comparative and European law whose writings I would read and follow in the same way a mystery book fan would follow his or her favorite and fertile author.
Then came the UNCITRAL adventure when, in 2010, UNCITRAL appointed Emmanuel Gaillard and George Bermann as experts to prepare a Guide on the 1958 New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, with the aim of promoting the uniform and effective interpretation and application of the New York Convention and limiting the risk that State practice might diverge from its spirit. Little did I know then—as I know now—that the UNCITRAL’s choice had united two life-long friends who had first met and befriended in the 1980s. And that’s how I found myself embarked on that adventure, when George Bermann invited my participation in the project, and that I came to lead the team of researchers supporting the UNCITRAL experts’ work. I have vivid memories of our first brainstorming sessions, when Emmanuel Gaillard and George Bermann exchanged ideas on how to tackle this daunting task, starting, as a first step, with a detailed research and analysis of the case law on the New York Convention in fifteen jurisdictions around the world.