Legal Theory of International Arbitration

Review excerpts from the book on Scribd

International arbitration readily lends itself to a legal theory analysis. The fundamentally philosophical notions of autonomy and freedom are at the heart of its field of study. Similarly essential are the questions of legitimacy raised by the parties’ freedom to favor a private form of dispute resolution over national courts, to choose their judges, to tailor the procedure and to choose the applicable rules of law, and by the arbitrators’ freedom to determine their own jurisdiction, to shape the conduct of the proceedings and to choose the rules applicable to the dispute.

The present work, based on a Course given at The Hague Academy of International Law in the Summer 2007, identifies the philosophical postulates that underlie this field of study and shows their profound coherence and the practical consequences that follow from these postulates in the resolution of international disputes.

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Emmanuel Gaillard is Professor of Law at University of Paris XII and a prominent practitioner in the field of international arbitration. Through his practice, extensive writing and teaching, he has contributed to the shaping of contemporary international arbitration law.
"[Kuckenberg adds that he thinks] Gaillard’s approach is 'the window to the future'" in Ross, A. Gaillard on the seat of arbitration, in Global Arbitration Review (GAR), Oct.5, 2009

"In the best French tradition of private international law scholarship, Professor Gaillard undertakes an intellectual tour de force which demonstrates that the law of international arbitration cannot properly be understood without reflection on its philosophical underpinnings and, vice versa, that different philosophical conceptions of the law of international arbitration are not without practical implications.", in Heiskanen, V. E. Gaillard, Aspects philosophiques du droit de l’arbitrage international, in EJIL 20/2009, p. 942, at pp. 942-947, also published on Global Law Books (

“Professor Gaillard’s lectures, which have now been published in a handy pocket book format, are indeed 'indispensable' to a proper understanding of contemporary international arbitration.", in Heiskanen, V. E. Gaillard, Aspects philosophiques du droit de l’arbitrage international, in EJIL 20/2009, p. 942, at pp. 942-947

"Una tarea de ese tipo tiene un obstáculo no desdeñable: el de hacer que la profundidad de las ideas no le quite inteligibilidad. El profesor Emmanuel Gaillard -que es, además, un abogado y árbitro de indiscutido prestigio mundial- ha sorteado con éxito ese obstáculo.", in Fernandez Arroyo, DP. Gaillard, Emmanuel, Aspects philosophiques du droit de l’arbitrage international, in DeCITA 11.2009, derecho del comercio internacional, 2009, p. 492, at pp. 492-494

"La lecture des Aspects philosophiques du droit de l'arbitrage international sera un passage obligé pour les universitaires qui enseignent le droit de l'arbitrage, leurs étudiants, les auteurs qui écrivent sur l'arbitrage, et les praticiens qui réfléchissent sur leur pratiques.", in Loquin, E. A propos de l’ouvrage d’Emmanuel Gaillard : Aspects philosophiques du droit de l’arbitrage international, in Revue de l’arbitrage, 2/2009, p. 325, at pp. 317-325

“The book provides an extraordinarily clear overview of the main conceptions of international arbitration and their various practical consequences. A reading is therefore highly recommended for all arbitration practitioners.”, P. Lalive, L’ordre public transnational et l’arbitre international, in Liber Fausto Pocar, 2009, p. 601, at pp. 599-611 (French)

“On all these points, Emmanuel Gaillard’s book bears witness to his vast experience and exceptional comparative knowledge, as well as incorporating abundant and contemporary material, which, once again, makes it literally indispensable reading for all international arbitration practitioners.”, P. Lalive, Aspects philosophiques du droit de l’arbitrage international, in ASA Bull. 4/2008 (December), p. 704, at pp. 700-704 (French)
Arbitration practitioners

Arbitration academics (and also academics interested in private international law and dispute resolution generally)

The readership that should be targeted is very large: law firms, libraries, public libraries, law professors, law students.