Review joint event "Gemeinsame Schiedsverfahrenskultur in der DACH-Region?"

Newsletter 12/2022 - Review: past events


Swiss Arbitration, VIAC and DIS hosted a conference on the common arbitration culture in the DACH region on 24 November 2022 in Basel. With the active participation of the participants, three panels elaborated that Swiss, Austrian and German arbitrations share common structural elements despite differences in detail. It is worthwhile to consider these common structural elements in international arbitral proceedings, at least if all parties are from civil law countries. This way, arbitral proceedings can be conducted more efficiently than under standards influenced by common law.

After the welcome by Korinna von Trotha (Swiss Arbitration) and Dr. Nikolaus Pitkowitz (VIAC), the discussion followed three specific issues. The first panel, moderated by Dr. Niklaus Zaugg (CMS von Erlach), dealt with early dispute resolution. Dr. Nicoletta Kröger (Corvel) elaborated that the Swiss Rules, the Vienna Rules and the DIS Rules empower the arbitral tribunal to facilitate settlement of disputes, with the DIS Rules even providing for an obligation to do so. Hon.-Prof. Dr. Irene Welser (Cerha Hempel) emphasized that, for example, the ICC Rules do not deal with settlement facilitation as a procedural management technique until Annex IV, and that ex-parte discussions constitute a limit for settlement efforts. Dr. Nicolas Herzog (Niedermann) presented Dos and Don'ts, with the discussion essentially revolving around the right time for settlement efforts by the arbitral tribunal.

The second panel lively argued about whether the arbitral tribunal has a duty to find the truth. However, the boxing gloves that had been brought along were not used. Dr. Stephan Wilske (Gleiss Lutz) and Dr. Stefan Riegler (Wolf Theiss) discussed questions like these: Should the arbitral tribunal ask for documents that both parties have not produced? Is it the task of the arbitral tribunal to illuminate the dark corners of the facts on its own initiative? Katherine Bell (Schellenberg Wittmer) skilfully moderated the very controversial discussion.

The third and final panel, moderated by Meike von Levetzow (Noerr), dealt with the handling of information provided by the respondents, specifically document production, burden of proof and claims by stages. Hannah Boehm (Hoffmann-LaRoche) and Dieter Hofmann (Walder Wyss) spoke on behalf of Switzerland, while Mag. Roxanne de Jesus (Pitkowitz) and Dr. Veit Öhlberger (Dorda) contributed the Austrian view. The German position was represented by Prof. Dr. Wolfram Buchwitz (University of Würzburg) and the moderator. In the course of the discussion it became clear that the arbitration culture of all three countries, influenced by the respective civil procedural usages, is similar. In each case, a tension exists with the instruments of international arbitration, namely document production. How this tension between national arbitration cultures and international customs, but also between substantive and procedural law, can be resolved was the subject of lively discussions.

In his closing remarks, Dr. Reinmar Wolff (DIS) thanked Flavio Peter (Peter & Kim) as the spiritus rector of the event. He stressed that the conference not only demonstrated the good relations between the three arbitral institutions. At the same time, it showed that the common arbitration culture in the DACH region deserves to be taken into account in international arbitration proceedings. This way, efficiency can be leveraged in the interest of the users of arbitration.

Reinmar Wolff


Wichtiger Hinweis: Veralteter Webbrowser INTERNET EXPLORER

Die DIS-Webseite wird nicht vollständig durch den veralteten INTERNET EXPLORER unterstützt, für den es keine Sicherheitsupdates mehr gibt. Einige wichtige Funktionen der Webseite stehen Ihnen mit dem INTERNET EXPLORER nicht (z.B. Gebührenrechner, Mitgliederzugang) oder nur sehr eingeschränkt (z.B. Veranstaltungsbereich) zur Verfügung.
Um die DIS-Webseite vollständig nutzen zu können, wechseln Sie bitte auf einen aktuellen Webbrowser wie z.B. Chrome, Edge, Firefox oder Safari.