The Color Line in International Arbitration: An American Perspective – Vol. 14 No. 4

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Author: Benjamin G. Davis*

Published: December 2004

United States
Commercial Disputes



The color line is the line in society between areas in which U.S. minorities have a presence of some kind and areas which non-minorities dominate essentially to the exclusion of U.S. minorities. This paper examines from an American perspective the color line in international commercial arbitration: a vital arena due to increasing globalization. Based on the survey results the paper concludes that a color line does exist in international commercial arbitration. The interaction between seven currents (U.S. current, Foreign-based U.S. minority current, Human Capital current, Cooptation current, Changing International Commercial Arbitration current, Lifestyle current, and Culture current) that determine the presence of U.S. minorities is analyzed. Recommendations for how to eliminate the color line are made.

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*Associate Professor of Law, University of Toledo College of Law.