Principles of Good Governance and Organisation of Arbitral Institutions - Chapter 2 - Arbitral Institutions Under Scrutiny: ASA Special Series No. 40
Urs WEBER-STECHER is a Partner of Wenger & Vieli Ltd in Zurich, Switzerland, heading the international arbitration practice. He has served as counsel, sole arbitrator, co-arbitrator and chairman in numerous cases under the Swiss Rules, ICC, UNCITRAL, CEPANI and in ad hoc proceedings. Mr Weber-Stecher holds an LL.M. degree from Tulane University, School of Law, including in-depth education in American and International Arbitration (Prof. Th. Carbonneau, in cooperation with the AAA) and a Ph.D. (doctor iuris) from the University of Zurich Faculty of Law. Since 2001 he is a Teaching Fellow for International Arbitration at the University of Zurich Faculty of Law; he is also a Director, Founding Member and Head Lecturer of the Swiss Arbitration Academy (www.swiss-arbitration-academy.ch). He serves as a Member of the Arbitration Court of the Swiss Chambers' Arbitration Institution and of the ICC Commission on Arbitration. He was a member of the Working Group on the 2012 revision of the Swiss Rules of International Arbitration.
In recent years, everybody has been talking about good corporate governance, mainly in connection with listed companies. “Corporate governance is the framework of rules, relationships, systems and processes within and by which authority is exercised and controlled in corporations. It encompasses the mechanisms by which companies, and those in control, are held to account. Corporate governance influences how the objectives of the company are set and achieved, how risk is monitored and assessed, and how performance is optimised”. 1
Have we ever heard key words like “mechanisms to control and hold to account”, “monitoring of risks” and “optimization of performance” in connection with the organization of arbitral institutions? We may have heard similar idioms in connection with arbitral proceedings that referred more to the role and tasks of the arbitral tribunal in organizing the arbitral proceedings. But have we heard of them in connection with the internal organisation of arbitral institutions? Even though one may observe that arbitral institutions are more frequently exposed to potential liability risks, good governance as a visible guiding principle of arbitral institutions is still not widespread. This was the main reason that an inquiry addressing as many arbitral institutions as possible around the world was conducted by two graduates of the Geneva LL.M. in International Dispute Settlement in cooperation with ASA. The report of the evaluation of this inquiry (Survey on Scrutiny of Arbitral Institutions), is included in this book.2