This conversation on diversity took place on Tuesday 22 March 2022. Delos has created a free universal open access database of potential arbitrator candidates, in a bid to open up a wider pool of talent and foster greater diversity of arbitrators. The database is available here. It is free to use, and any arbitrator or aspiring arbitrator can appear in it for free (you can register here and fill out your profile here).

The webinar featured a keynote by Professor Pierre Tercier, a presentation of the database, a moderated Q&A with May Tai and Hafez Virjee, and closing remarks by Dr Kabir Duggal and Amanda Lee.

The short bios and pictures of the speakers can be found below, with thanks to Herbert Smith Freehills, Careers in Arbitration, RAI and REAL for their support of this event. We would also like to thank TDM and OGEMID for their support of this diversity initiative and related arbitrator database.

With the support of

ABOUT OUR SPEAKERS

The Speakers in the picture above and their short bios below are presented from left to right in alphabetical order:

Amanda Lee is a co-host of the Delos TagTime webinar series, and a consultant at Costigan King. Ms Lee acts as arbitrator and counsel in domestic and international dispute resolution proceedings, with particular focus on the automotive, construction, finance and waste management sectors. She has acted in a number of domestic and international commercial arbitrations, both ad hoc and under institutional rules. She is admitted to practice as a solicitor-advocate (civil) in England & Wales, and to the New York Bar. Ms Lee is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) and served as chair of the CIArb’s Young Members Group from 2017 to 2018. She is a former member of the CIArb’s Board of Management. Ms Lee is a member of the Board of ArbitralWomen and the Global Advisory Board of ICDR Y&I, and serves as an Ambassador for R.E.A.L. She is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Law, London. She founded Careers in Arbitration in 2019 to support those seeking to develop a career in the field of arbitration. Ms Lee is recognised as a Rising Star in the inaugural Legal 500 UK Arbitration Powerlist.

Dr Kabir Duggal is an attorney in Arnold and Porter’s New York office focusing on international investment arbitration, international commercial arbitration and public international law matters, serving both as counsel and arbitrator. He is a lecturer-in-law at Columbia Law School teaching international arbitration and also acts as a Consultant for the United Nations Office of the High Representative for Least Developed Countries (UN-OHRLLS) on the creation of a novel “Investment Support Program.” He is admitted to several arbitral institutions all over the world and also serves as a Council Member to the AAA/ICDR. He is elected to the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors of the California International Arbitration Council, Inc. (CIAC) and serves on its Academic Council. He also serves on the Advisory Board of the Boston International Arbitration Council (BIAC). Dr. Duggal is a graduate of the University of Mumbai (University Medal), University of Oxford (DHL-Times of India Scholar) and NYU School of Law (Hauser Global Scholar) and Leiden Law School (2018 Academic Prize by CEPANI). He is currently pursuing an SJD Degree at Harvard Law School. He is admitted to practice law in England and Wales (Solicitor), New York, Washington D.C. and India.

May Tai is the Managing Partner, Asia, at Herbert Smith Freehills. She specialises in cross-border China-related and regional Asian disputes, as well as contentious regulatory matters. She regularly advises governments, government-owned entities and commercial clients (including financial institutions and energy companies) in Asia, Europe and the United States, including acting as counsel and advocate in arbitrations under various rules and court proceedings.  She has acted as arbitrator in SIAC and HKIAC proceedings, and has also sat as an Emergency Arbitrator under the ICC Rules. May speaks five languages fluently, including Bahasa (Malaysian and Indonesian), Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese) and English. She is a CEDR accredited mediator and an arbitrator in the HKIAC List of Arbitrators, and is qualified as a solicitor in England and Wales, and Hong Kong. May is based in Hong Kong but divides her time between Herbert Smith Freehills’ nine Asia offices in her role as managing partner for the region. She is a member of the Delos Board of Advisors.

Prof. Pierre Tercier is a Professor emeritus at the University of Friborg and Honorary President of the International Court of Arbitration of the ICC. He now works mainly as an independent arbitrator. For over a generation, Pierre Tercier has been one of the most respected legal scholars in the Switzerland. He has authored more than 250 legal writings, focusing on contract law and international arbitration, among which there are several treatises that have become instant classics. Pierre Tercier has extensive experience in international arbitration, having chaired the ICC International Court of Arbitration and having served many times in ICC cases. He was also Chairman of the Swiss Commission on Competition, the Swiss Cartel Commission and the Swiss Insurance Law Society. Prof. Tercier has researched and taught law at many universities, including Cambridge University, Columbia Law School, the Max-Planck Institute for private international law in Hamburg and the Universities of Paris I (Panthéon-Sorbonne), Paris II (Panthéon-Assas) and Paris IV. He also has been Dean of Fribourg University Law School.

Hafez Virjee is the President and a co-Founder of Delos. Hafez also serves as an independent arbitrator at Virjee Arbitration. He previously acted mainly as counsel. His clients have spanned the range of listed companies, private equity firms, tech start-ups, industrial concerns, State entities and treaty organisations, in disputes across a wide range of sectors and relationships, including shareholder agreements, joint-ventures, agency, M&A, telecommunications, tech, energy, pharmaceutical, construction and defence. Hafez is a solicitor of England & Wales and also qualified in France. He was previously at Dechert in Paris (with a secondment to Dubai in 2015) and prior to that at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in London. He co-edits the Delos Guide to Arbitration Places (GAP) and regularly writes and speaks on international arbitration and legal risk management. He holds degrees from the University of Cambridge (M.A.), the Université Paris II – Panthéon-Assas (Maîtrise) and the University of California – Berkeley (LL.M.). He is listed among the Future Leaders of Arbitration by Who’s Who Legal.

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