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[Recap] Maxwell Conversations: Lawrence Teh speaks with Lucy Reed

Maxwell Chambers successfully concluded the inaugural Maxwell Conversations in July 2021.

In the first series of Maxwell Conversations, Maxwell Chambers partnered with Lawrence Teh, a Senior Partner and Co-Head of the International Arbitration Practice at Dentons Rodyk & Davidson LLP, Singapore, who spoke with prominent US arbitrator and President of ICCA, Prof Lucy Reed on the topic “Does a Right to a Physical Hearing Exist in International Arbitration?”. The session was also joined by Yasmine Lahlou, an editor of the ICCA Right to a Physical Hearing Project and Chiann Bao, a leading arbitrator.

In the session, these main points were covered:

  • At what stage in international arbitration was there a developed international sense of a right to be heard, i.e. that the arbitrator or the tribunal had a duty to hear each side before he/she/it made a decision?
  • To what extent has civil law and common law traditions influenced the sense that the right to a hearing meant the right to a physical hearing?
  • ICCA’s research project “Does the Right to a Physical Hearing Exist in International Arbitration” was launched in September 2020. By May this year, 77 country reports had been received. Do the editors see any commonalities?
  • Is it fair that the reasoning from technologically advanced perspectives – that there is no right to a physical hearing – is applied uniformly to all jurisdictions? Should tribunals take the position that general laws and general arbitration agreements do not remove the power of the tribunal to recognise that the right to an oral hearing includes the right to a physical hearing in appropriate circumstances?

Watch the recorded session below to find out what our speakers have to say:

If you are interested in further reading on the subject discussed by the conversationalists, you can refer to the following references:

  • ICCA Project: Does a Right to a Physical Hearing Exist in International Arbitration? Click here to read.
  • Historical development of international acknowledgement of the right to a hearing – Geneva Convention 1927, New York Convention 1958
  • Gary Born, International Commercial Arbitration, Third Edition 2021, Kluwer. Click here to read.
  • Maxi Scherer et al, The Principle of Equal Treatment in Arbitration, p 3. Click here to read.
  • Maxi Scherer, “Remote Hearings in International Arbitration: An Analytical Framework,” §3.2. Click here to read.
  • Jackson Ralston, International Arbitration from Athens to Locarno, pp 162-63. Click here to read.
  • Lucy Reed, (Ab)use of Due Process: Sword vs Shield, 33 Arb Int’l 361-377 (2017)
  • UN Office of Rule of Law, Remote Hearing Toolkit. Click here to read.
  • OECD Access to justice and the COVID-19 pandemic: Compendium of Country Practices. Click here to read.



Lucy Reed is an independent arbitrator with Arbitration Chambers (New York), and currently the President of ICCA and a Vice-President of the SIAC Court. She retired in 2016 from the international law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, where she led the global international arbitration group from the New York, Hong Kong and Singapore offices, and then was Professor of Practice and Director of the Centre for International Law of the National University of Singapore through 2019. While with the US State Department Legal Adviser’s Office, Lucy was the US Agent to the Iran-US Claims Tribunal. She is a former President of the American Society of International Law, Chair of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration, and a Vice President of the ICC Court. A US-qualified lawyer, Lucy was educated at the University of Chicago Law School and Brown University.


Lawrence Teh is a Senior Partner and Co-Head of the International Arbitration Practice at Dentons Rodyk & Davidson LLP, Singapore. He advises clients in all areas of commercial law and appears regularly as lead counsel in the Singapore courts, in arbitration, mediation and other forms of dispute resolution. He has experience in handling disputes in international trade and commodities, maritime and aviation, banking and financial services, onshore and offshore construction, mergers acquisitions and joint ventures and insurance. Lawrence is particularly noted for his work on jurisdictional issues in international arbitration and litigation.


Yasmine Lahlou is a partner at the Manhattan-based disputes boutique Chaffetz Lindsey. Initially trained in Paris and admitted in New York and Paris, Yasmine speaks fluent English, French and Italian, and some Portuguese, and has over 20 years of experience of international arbitration and litigation.


Chiann Bao is an international arbitrator with Arbitration Chambers. She currently serves as a Vice Chair of the IBA Arbitration Committee. She is also a Vice President of the ICC Court of Arbitration and chair of the ICC Commission’s Task Force on ADR and Arbitration. From 2010 to 2016, she served as the Secretary General of the HKIAC and was subsequently appointed as a Council Member of the HKIAC. Chiann is an honorary senior fellow at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law and a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. She serves as a mentor for Young ICCA.


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