The Use of Qualitative Research Techniques in Studying Arbitration: A Comment on a Study of Corporate Attitudes Towards International Arbitration* – Vol. 17 No. 1

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Author: Mahmoud Reza Firoozmand**

Published: October 2007

Commercial Disputes
Dispute Resolution and Litigation
International Litigation

Description: Various dispute resolution mechanisms are now being used by parties in international commercial relationships among which arbitration, mediation and conciliation have proven to be more popular ones. Arbitration as the most widely used private dispute resolution method is now undoubtedly a global phenomenon, with many national, regional and international arbitration institutions and instruments supporting the task of domestic and international commercial dispute resolution. In recent years more attention has been paid to research, with a view to a better appreciation of international commercial arbitration. Such research has involved both academics and practicing lawyers who use the system, in its commitment to a better understanding of this growing phenomenon. Some of these studies developed an analytical approach, for the purpose of testing the validity of some perceptions currently held regarding various legal and practical aspects of arbitration as a means to settle commercial disputes, e.g., whether those involved in international business are more in favor of arbitration than litigation; whether arbitration is less costly for parties to a dispute than litigation in national courts; and whether the lack of an appeals mechanism in international arbitration is seen by international corporations as a fundamental flaw in this dispute resolution mechanism. A distinct thread that runs through these various studies is their adherence to traditional legal research methodologies and techniques. In the recent past, however, there has been a new stream of innovative research which has sought to examine different aspects of arbitration through the use of other techniques, particularly qualitative interviews and survey questionnaires.

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*Current Developments
**Mahmoud Reza Firoozmand, PhD.; Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law and Policy (CEPMLP), University of Dundee.