PARTIES' CONTRIBUTION TO THE ARBITRAL AWARD: SUBMISSION OF A SYNOPSIS OF THE AWARD
That the litigants all aim at persuading the arbitrators to render an award as close as possible to their own pleadings is stating the obvious. Seen from this perspective, the parties' contribution to the arbitral award extends to each and every action taken by the claimant and the respondent in the arbitration.
The issue at stake is much more specific: could and should the parties contribute to the drafting of the award by submitting synopses of the decision they are seeking? This rather iconoclastic prospect was first envisaged by the author in Les Échos, a French business newspaper, with a view to simplifying arbitral proceedings. It is indeed submitted that the true nature of arbitration is damaged when it is conducted in an over sophisticated fashion.
Because simplification may not be a natural tendency for counsel to the parties, it has been suggested that the arbitrators' exercise of their powers over the management of the case be strengthened. Most recently, the ICC Task Force on Reducing Time and Costs in Complex Arbitration, co-chaired by Yves Derains and Christopher Newmark, has contemplated the possibility for the arbitral tribunal to organize after a first exchange of briefs, a meeting where a preliminary discussion of the substance of the case would take place as well as a discussion of how the next stages of proceedings should be organized.