Stockholm has long been recognised as a leader in the field of arbitration known for hosting arbitration, and home to one of the most respected international arbitration institutes, the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce. The Department of Law at Stockholm University offers extensive postgraduate programmes and supports specialised institutes that attract students from all over the world.
Accordingly, Stockholm is a natural place to engage in intellectually vigorous study of both the theory and practice of international commercial arbitration. Stockholm University has developed a unique programme in International Commercial Arbitration. It uses a variety of teaching formats, emphasises student participation in the learning process, and provides opportunities for students to apply theory in simulated arbitration exercises.
Students from a broad range of backgrounds participate in a dynamic learning experience, where the multifaceted aspects of arbitration are considered from a range of comparative perspectives and always with an inquiring mind and a hands-on approach.
As well as the resources of the Faculty and the University, the programme enjoys the support and contributions of prominent practicing lawyers who are internationally recognised in the field.
The course work
The programme begins with a comprehensive course that requires substantial on-going preparation and active student participation during the 20-week fall term. The course will employ a comparative approach, using the recently adopted Swedish Arbitration Law as an example of a modern arbitration law based upon the UNCITRAL Model Law. While the course will emphasize a solid theoretical understanding of the principles, concepts, and rules governing arbitration, it will also explore practical issues that face parties, legal representatives, arbitrators, and courts. A variety of types of arbitral proceedings will be considered, both ad hoc and institutional forms. The lectures and seminars will be conducted by Professor Lars Heuman and Dr. Patricia Shaughnessy, as well as guest lecturers who can provide specialized experience and knowledge in specific areas. Attendance is obligatory and student participation in the course will be considered in assessing the student´s performance and final grade.
Moot arbitration exercise
Concurrent with the course work, all students will participate in a simulated arbitration exercise designed to provide an opportunity to gain practical skills while applying the theoretical knowledge obtained in the course. There will be two moot arbitration exercises, one based upon an institutional arbitration and the other based on an ad hoc proceeding, with half of the students participating in one and the other half in the other. All students will prepare written submissions and will conduct simulated arbitration proceedings. This exercise will be graded and part of the course work.
During the spring term, students will focus on independent study of a selected issue or subject by writing a thesis of approximately 30 to 35 pages. In preparation for this work, students will receive advice on creating effective research strategies, legal writing in English, developing legal analysis and argument, selecting a topic and formulating a research inquiry, and pursuing a research project. Each student will be assigned a faculty supervisor who will supervise and evaluate the work. Students will present their work-in-progress or final work at seminars attended by other students. The thesis work will represent 20 weeks of study. Students are expected to remain in Stockholm during their thesis work.
Seminars and study visits
During both the spring and fall term, students will be invited to participate in and occaisionally lead seminars on selected topics. Special study visits will also be arranged such as to the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce, the Svea Court of Appeal, selected international and Swedish law firms, and other places of interest.
Participation in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot
Selected students from the course will be invited to represent Stockholm University in the Annual Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna. Participation in the competition has been sponsored by Gernandt & Danielsson Advokatbyrå KB.
Grading and evaluation
Student performance will generally be evaluated with an emphasis on identifying and analyzing issues and generating and criticising possible solutions with a structured approach and a clear presentation. Students will be evaluated on the basis of their participation in class, written and oral presentations in the mock arbitration, performance in other assignments, and results on a written final examination. The thesis will be graded separately and should demonstrate a student´s ability to formulate a legal inquiry and to engage in a methodological and critical analysis of the issue.
Faculty and staff
The primary faculty member responsible for the course is Dr. Patricia Shaughnessy. Other qualified faculty and lawyers experienced in arbitration will also contribute to the program. The course administrator, Mrs Mei Akbarian, is responsible for all of the administrative matters relating to the course and Mrs Viktoria Pettersson will provide non-academic assistance in appropriate matters.