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Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution

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International Commercial Arbitration Concentration

International Commercial Arbitration Concentration

Download the ICA Brochure

The LLM with a concentration in International Commercial Arbitration is designed to combine a robust academic foundation, a capstone practice experience in which every student will compete in an international arbitration competition, methodical examination and practice of the negotiation and mediation processes, and enough electives for students to be able to take electives to sit for the New York or California bar exam.

The curriculum to earn the LLM with a Concentration in International Commercial Arbitration is:

Required: Nine Two Unit Courses  (18 Units)

1.     International Commercial Arbitration Theory and Doctrine

2.     International Commercial Arbitration Procedure and Practice

3.     International Commercial Arbitration and the National Courts

4.     International Investment Disputes

5.     Ethical Considerations in International Commercial Arbitration

6.     Capstone Mock Arbitration

7.     Negotiation Theory and Practice

8.     Mediation Theory and Practice

9.     Introduction to US Law*

Introduction to US Law would be waived for any student  who has completed or is completing more than ten units of US substantive law courses, which is often required to sit for a bar exam in the US.  International students sitting for the California Bar exam would complete 16 units of required courses listed above and 12 units of substantive law courses as required to sit for the New York and California Bar exams.

Electives :

Ten units selected from the School of Law substantive law and/or dispute resolution curriculum:

(Students waiving the Introduction to US Law Course would take twelve elective units.)

View Full Program Requirements

The program requirements for the International Commercial Arbitration concentration will differ slightly from the standard LLM in Dispute Resolution so applicants can elect the concentration at the point of application or when they arrive on campus.

The LLM in Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine also offers concentrations in Mediation, Arbitration, Litigation and International Commercial Law and Arbitration.  For additional information on the other concentrations please download the Viewbook.

Faculty Director

Jack CoeJack J. Coe, Jr. is professor of law at Pepperdine University with a specialty in private international law. Professor Coe's training includes advanced studies in Europe. He received his LL. M. at Exeter, the Diploma of the Hague Academy of International Law, and a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics. He is an Associate Reporter for the Restatement of the Law of International Commercial Arbitration.


Contributing Faculty

Thomas J. StipanowichThomas J. Stipanowich is the academic director of the Straus Institute and professor of law at Pepperdine University School of Law. Stipanowich has received the ABA Dispute Resolution Section's D'Alemberte/Raven Award and recently served as the WilmerHale Scholar‐in‐Residence for Fall 2010 in the International
Arbitration Department in London.


Lucy ReedLucy Reed is Partner for Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, and the global co-head of the international arbitration group. She chairs the Institute for Transactional Arbitration and serves on the LCIA Court and ICC Arbitration Commission. She was president of the American Society of International Law.Reed sat on the Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission and directed the Claims Resolution Tribunal for Dormant Accounts in Switzerland. Before joining the firm, she was the first general counsel for the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization and, while with the US State Department, the US agent to the Iran-US Claims Tribunal. Following her role as general counsel of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (1995 - 1998), one of Lucy's areas of focus is international arbitration involving South Korean public and private parties.Reed is ranked as a top-tier international arbitration practitioner by Chambers USA 2011, and as a leading lawyer in international arbitration in The Legal 500 US 2011.

Meg Kinnear is currently the Secretary-General of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) at the World Bank. She was formerly the Senior General Counsel and Director General of the Trade Law Bureau of Canada, where she was responsible for the conduct of all international investment and trade litigation involving Canada, and participated in the negotiation of bilateral investment agreements. In November 2002, Ms. Kinnear was also named Chair of the Negotiating Group on Dispute Settlement for the Free Trade of the Americas Agreement.From October 1996 to April 1999, Ms. Kinnear was Executive Assistant to the Deputy Minister of Justice
of Canada. Prior to this, Ms. Kinnear was Counsel at the Civil Litigation Section of the Canadian Department of Justice where she appeared before federal and provincial courts as well as domestic arbitration panels.

Catherine RogersCatherine Rogers is a scholar of international arbitration and professional ethics. Professor Rogers is an associate reporter for the American Law Institute's new Restatement of the Law (Third) of International Commercial Arbitration. She has served as an expert on topics of international arbitration and global legal ethics for various international organizations, including the OECD, UNCITRAL, the International Judicial Academy, the American Society of International Law, and the International Bar Association.  Before entering academia, Professor Rogers practiced international litigation and arbitration in New York, Hong Kong, and San Francisco.

John R. CrookJohn R. Crook is Professorial Lecturer at George Washington Law School and teaches international arbitration. He is a frequent consultant to counsel in ICSID and other international proceedings, has served as an arbitrator under NAFTA, and was a Commissioner on the Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, which successfully addressed extensive claims stemming from the two countries' 1998-2000 war.

Crook served for nearly three decades in the U.S. State Department's Office of the Legal Adviser. He was the second U.S. Agent at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal in The Hague, was deeply involved in creating the U.N. Compensation Commission in Geneva, and appeared in several cases before the International Court of Justice. From 2000-2004, he was General Counsel of the Multinational Force and Observers, an international organization operating an 1800-soldier peacekeeping force in the Sinai Desert in Egypt.

Mr. Crook edits the American Journal of International Law's section on Contemporary U.S. Practice Relating to International Law and has written extensively on dispute settlement. He is vice-president of the American Society of International Law.

Linda SilbermanLinda Silberman is the Martin Lipton Professor of Law at New York University School of Law. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan and the University of Michigan Law School and later a Fulbright Scholar in London, England. She joined the NYU faculty in 1971 and became the first tenured woman full-professor at the School. Professor Silberman teaches and writes in the areas of Conflict of Laws, Civil Procedure, Comparative Civil Procedure, Transnational Litigation, and International Commercial Arbitration. Prior to joining the NYU faculty, Professor Silberman practiced law with the Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal law firm in Chicago, Illinois. In 1985-86, she was Professor in Residence at the U.S. Department of Justice. Professor Silberman has been a member of numerous U.S. State Department delegations to the Hague Conference on Private International Law and is a member of the State Department Advisory Committee on Private International Law. Professor Silberman is co-author of a leading Civil Procedure casebook (Silberman, Stein & Wolff), now in its 3rd edition, as well as a book on comparative civil procedure, Civil Litigation in Comparative Context (2007). She was co-Reporter of a recently completed project of the American Law Institute – Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments: Analysis and Proposed Federal Statute. Her most recent articles have dealt with class actions and choice of law, including a recent piece, "Transnational Litigation and Global Securities Class-Action Lawsuits".

Margrete StevensMargrete Stevens is a consultant in King & Spalding's Washington, D.C., office working on investment treaty claims with the firm's International Arbitration Practice Group. Prior to joining King & Spalding, Ms. Stevens worked for nearly 20 years at the World Bank Group's International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), where she served as counsel and later as senior counsel. Before joining the World Bank Group, Stevens served with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Botswana and Malaysia. Stevens serves as Vice Chair of the International Bar Association's Mediation Committee and is a Member of the Board of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce Arbitration Institute. In addition, Stevens is the Founding Member of the Washington, D.C. International Arbitration Club. Stevens serves on the ADR Advisory Board of the International Law Institute in Washington, D.C., the Advisory Board of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration in Dallas and on the Advisory Board of the Foreign Direct Investment International Moot Competition. Stevens is also a member of the London Court of International Arbitration, the American Society of International Law and was a member of the AAA delegation at the 47th and 48th Sessions of the UNCITRAL Working Group II (Arbitration and Conciliation).

Steve SmithSteve Smith is partner at Jones Day and focuses his practice on the arbitration and litigation of complex international commercial disputes in a broad range of industries. In his more than 30 years of practice, he has handled matters for and against sovereign entities from the Middle East, Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa and has served as counsel and arbitrator in numerous arbitrations around the globe. Smith is co-chair of the ABA's International Arbitration Committee, a member of the ICC Commission on Arbitration in Paris, France, and chairs the ICC's Arbitration Committee for the Northwest U.S. He is also an honorary member of the Commercial Bar Association of London (COMBAR) and a former chair of the International Law Section of the State Bar of California.

Jasper KimJasper Kim is a 2011-12 visiting scholar at Harvard University, professor and former department chair at the Graduate School of International Studies at Ewha University, and adjunct faculty at the Pepperdine University School of Law. He is the founder and chief executive of the non-profit consultancy, Asia-Pacific Global Research Group ( Previously, he worked for Barclays Capital, Credit Suisse, and Lehman Brothers. He is a licensed attorney (Washington, D.C.) who received graduate degrees from the London School of Economics (UK), Rutgers University School of Law, and negotiation training at Harvard. His recent book is ABA Fundamentals: International Economic Systems (ABA, 2012).

Eric van GinkelEric van Ginkel is a commercial mediator and arbitrator in Los Angeles and an adjunct professor of law at Pepperdine University School of Law. He holds J.D. degrees from Leiden University Faculty of Law in the Netherlands and Columbia University School of Law, as well as a certificate in dispute resolution and an LL.M. degree in international dispute resolution from the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine University School of Law.

Ben H. SheppardBen H. Sheppard, Jr., is a Distinguished Lecturer and director of the A. A. White Dispute Resolution Center at the University of Houston Law Center, and visiting professor at the Straus Institute (Summer 2013). Prior to academia, Sheppard was partner at Vinson & Elkins L.L.P., where he served as cochair to the firm's International Dispute Resolution Practice. 


Peter RobinsonPeter Robinson is managing director of the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution and associate professor at Pepperdine University School of Law. He has presented advanced negotiation and mediation skills courses in more than 39 states and foreign countries. He has served on the boards of the Christian Conciliation Service of Los Angeles, Ventura Center for Dispute Settlement, Dispute Resolution Services of the LACBA, Southern California Mediation Association, and California Dispute Resolution Council. He is a fellow of the International Academy of Mediators, a member of the American College of Civil Trial Mediators and was recognized as a Southern California Super Lawyer in the area of mediation in 2006.