Reality Test: Current State of Affairs in Theory and Practice Relating to “Lex Arbitri” – Vol. 17 No. 2

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Author: Loukas Mistelis*

Published: December 2007

Applicable Law
Law Applicable to Procedure



The law and rules governing international arbitration procedure (also referred to as “lex arbitri”) is the focus of this article. The references to realism are effectively references to Karl Popper and his work on verification or disproval of theories. The article examines in particular whether the existing dominant definition of “lex arbitri” in English law can be verified or disproved on the basis of practice and the current law. In addition, the article examines whether this definition meets international standards.

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*Clive M. Schmitthof Professor of Transnational Commercial Law and Arbitration; Director, School of International Arbitration, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary University of London. I am grateful to Dr. Stefan Kröll and Professor Julian Lew QC who shared their comments and criticism on earlier drafts of this paper. Mr. Stavros Brekoulakis read critically at the final stage of the manuscript. Errors of face, judgment, and taste are, of course, mine. A short version of this paper was submitted to the Festschrift Norbert Horn.