At Amicus Partners, the Geneva Centre for International Dispute Settlements (CIDS) is more well known for the MIDS programme which sees a large number of India applicants.

Now, for the first time, the CIDS is collaborating with the Faculty of Law of the University of Buenos Aires to organise the Latin American International Arbitration Course (July 20-31) this year.

Nicolas Caffo, a MIDS alum and associate at KNOETZL in Austria, serves as member of the Executive Committee of the LAIAC. In this interview, he explains why the LAIAC is “Latin American” in terms of location alone, why prospective MIDS applicants ought to look at the LAIAC, and a whole lot more.

(Edited excerpts)

Given its focus on Latin America, how do you think Indian practitioners can benefit from the course?

The LAIAC aims to be a global and demanding international arbitration course addressed to participants worldwide. It is “Latin American” in the sense that it is the first institution at this scale in the region, but the content of the lectures as well as the participants and professors are not “Latin American focused”.

“The content of the lectures as well as the participants and professors are not “Latin American focused”.”

Indian practitioners and students wishing to gain top-notch education in international commercial and investment arbitration will therefore benefit from LAIAC by being taught by the leading individuals in international dispute settlement.

Furthermore, LAIAC is developed under the auspices of the Geneva Center for International Dispute Settlement (CIDS), which conducts the MIDS LL.M. every year. This explains why some stellar faculty members from the MIDS program are lecturing at LAIAC, such as Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler, Zachary Douglas, Raul Vinuesa, Marcelo Kohen, and Antonio Rigozzi.

Considering the large amount of Indian applicants to the MIDS every year, it may be beneficial for prospective MIDS applicants from India to take part in LAIAC in order to gain exposure to these professors and get a grasp of the “MIDS spirit”.

“Considering the large amount of Indian applicants to the MIDS every year, it may be beneficial for prospective MIDS applicants from India to take part in LAIAC in order to gain exposure to these professors and get a grasp of the “MIDS spirit”.”

Additionally, the course is designed for a limited number of participants and thus enables one to interact directly with LAIAC’s faculty.

Would the participants be informed in advance of the lectures that may be conducted in Spanish?

All the courses and lectures will be conducted in English with the exception of one evening lecture, which will be in Spanish. We organized the course in such way to encourage worldwide applicants to take part in LAIAC.

The topics covered in the courses and lectures are taught from an international perspective, identical to those one would be confronted by undertaking an LL.M. in international dispute settlement.

The admissions criteria mentions you are seeking advanced students – is this mandatory or can students enrolled in the undergraduate law degree also apply?

The LAIAC is primarily addressed to practitioners wishing to expand their knowledge and experience in international arbitration, as well as to government officials, and postgraduate students.

We welcome applications from students enrolled in their final years of undergraduate studies, provided that they can show strong academic credentials and a keen interest in this field of law.

“We welcome applications from students enrolled in their final years of undergraduate studies, provided that they can show strong academic credentials and a keen interest in this field of law.”

The LAIAC has been thought and designed for those wishing to pursue an international career or planning to undertake an LL.M. in the future, as well as for those who have already done an LL.M. and want to deepen their background in international dispute settlement.

What makes LAIAC different from other courses?

First, the program was designed to provide both, an (in depth) overview of international arbitration through the General Course taught by Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler and also to tackle more specific topics that practitioners are always keen to understand, such as substantive treaty protection, construction arbitration, contract and investment disputes, sport arbitration, jurisdiction and admissibility, etc.

Each topic of the Thematic Courses was thought out in detail in order to provide LAIAC participants with the necessary tools to develop their profiles in international arbitration.

Second, LAIAC also provides its participants with practical experience through its collaboration with Young ICCA, who will organise a one-day workshop in advocacy skills and cross-examination.

“LAIAC also provides its participants with practical experience through its collaboration with Young ICCA, who will organise a one-day workshop in advocacy skills and cross-examination.”

Finally, LAIAC aims at bringing together practitioners and academics from different jurisdictions. In this spirit, several side events will be organized on a daily basis, such as conferences, round tables and receptions in different locations. This will allow participants to interact with practitioners from different countries.

(Applications are to be submitted by 29 February 2020 for the first round and by 30 April 2020 for the second round. More details here)

 

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