DATES: NOV  28 - DEC 9, 2016    
TUITION: $3950    






This course teaches lawyers, investors and government officials how to draft, negotiate and interpret international investment treaties, and how to resolve disputes arising from them, including the valuation of damages and enforcement. The use of bilateral investment agreements has exploded in recent years. In 2010, almost 3,000 such treaties were in effect. This course provides students with the basics of foreign investment law and regulation and advanced instruction in how and when to initiate arbitration proceedings against nations that violate investment agreements.


Course Outline


Basic Standards for the Treatment of Foreign Investment

  • National laws and regulations
  • Minimum standards under customary international law
  • Background on the history of free trade and other agreements relating to investment
  • Substance of common investor protection clauses, including national treatment, MFN, fair and equitable treatment, transfer of funds and expropriation and nationalization


Investor-State Dispute Settlement

  • Arbitration under various treaties, including ICSID, NAFTA, CAFTA, ECT and UNCITRAL
  • Selection of forum and the arbitrators
  • Alternative forms of dispute resolution
  • Role of the arbitral tribunal and conduct of proceedings
  • Managing the arbitration
  • Sources and choice of applicable law
  • State defenses to investor claims
  • Methods of calculating damages
  • Recognition, enforcement and challenges to an arbitral award


Course Advisors

Ian A. Laird is a Special Legal Consultant in the International Dispute Resolution Group of Crowell & Moring LLP in its Washington, D.C. office. He is also licensed to practice as a barrister & solicitor in Ontario, Canada. His practice is focused in the field of international investment law and arbitration. Ian has spoken extensively and published numerous articles on international investment arbitration, and serves as Editor-in-Chief of, the on-line investment arbitration award service published by Oxford University Press.

Dr. Borzu Sabahi is an attorney in the International Arbitration group of Curtis Mallet Prevost Colt & Mosle LLP in Washington, DC. He is licensed to practice in New York and District of Columbia. He focuses his practice on representing governments and state-owned entities in investment treaty arbitration, international commercial arbitration and public international law matters. Mr. Sabahi's experience includes serving as counsel and expert in cases brought under a number of bilateral investment treaties, NAFTA Chapter 11, and DR-CAFTA Chapter 10 and under the rules of UNCITRAL, ICSID, ICC, ICDR and LCIA in a variety of industrial sectors, including oil and gas and power generation. Mr. Sabahi is also an adjunct professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center where he co-teaches a seminar on investor state dispute resolution. He regularly speaks at conferences and has widely published on various aspects of international investment law, including a comprehensive casebook entitled "Investor State Arbitration" (co-author, Oxford 2008)

Professor Jose Antonio Rivas is an associate at Arnold and Porter in Washington DC, focusing his practice on international investment arbitration. He is former Foreign Investment Director of the Ministry of Trade of Colombia, where he updated the Colombian International Investment Agreement (IIA) Model and he successfully concluded over twelve IIA negotiations. Professor Rivas is former Counsel of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID). He received his Doctorate in Law in Juridical Science –SJD– with Distinction from Georgetown University Law Center, where he servers as adjunct professor of Investment Treaty Arbitration, Public International Law, and Landmark Judgments of the ICJ. He is author of various articles and book chapters on international investment arbitration and public international law.