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Award writing, Reasoned rulings, Civil law, Common law, Judicial education, International commercial arbitration


The primary focus of this Article is to analyze various process-oriented and structural issues relating to reasoned awards in international commercial arbitration so as to improve the practical and theoretical understanding of international awards. That discussion, which is found in Section IV, considers various factors from both the common law and civil law perspectives so as to take into account the blended nature of international commercial arbitration.

Of course, to be fully comprehensible, the detailed analysis in Section IV must first be put into context. Therefore, Section II describes the difficulties associated with defining a reasoned award in international commercial arbitration while Section III considers why such awards are necessary or useful as a functional matter.

Before beginning, it is helpful to note two basic points. First, reasoned awards can vary a great deal in terms of form, tone and style. As a result, this Article does not suggest a single, formulaic model that should be followed in all cases but instead provides an analytical framework that can be adapted to the particular needs of the dispute at hand. Second, when discussing how international commercial arbitrators should approach the drafting of a reasoned award, this Article does not address basic rules of good writing. Although these issues can be quite important, they are covered in detail elsewhere and need not be discussed herein.

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Michigan Journal of International Law