The Notion of ‘Arbitral Award’


Dr. Cristina M. Mariottini and Professor Burkhard Hess

MPILux Working Paper 2020 (3)

Abstract: International conventions are often based on terms and concepts to be understood independently from domestic laws. While a uniform and coherent interpretation of international instruments signifies, in and of itself, a valuable interest, the development of autonomous concepts within the framework of an international convention may be faced with several inherent impediments. Against this backdrop, this paper examines whether the framework of international commercial arbitration supports the establishment of an autonomous concept of ‘arbitral award’ in the context of, in particular, the 1958 New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards and the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration. Relying on a comparative analysis of the notion of ‘arbitral award’ in core jurisdictions, this paper contextualizes the feasibility and even the desirability of an autonomous notion of ‘arbitral award’ in the framework of international commercial arbitration. In doing so, it draws, i.a., from a comparison of the underlying principles and objectives of the New York Convention and other treaties on the circulation of decisions and settlements in civil and commercial matters.

Keywords: Arbitral award; 1958 New York Convention; UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration; 2005 HCCH Choice of Court Convention; 2019 HCCH Judgments Convention; 2019 Singapore Convention on International Mediated Settlement Agreements