Robert Gordon University’s (RGU) Law School recently battled it out in one of the world’s most prestigious international competitions for law students.
A group of RGU law students travelled to Vienna where representatives from 311 universities around the globe went head-to-head in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot competition.
The Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot is a competition for law students from all over the world. It involves a dispute arising out of a contract of sale between two companies coming from countries party to the UN Convention on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards and the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods.
This year RGU was represented by Lana Borisova, Imaobong Eshiet, Ahmed Fouad, Roy Janho and Natalia Kashina. Folake Sadiq supported the team in the capacity of a student coach. Peter Murphy and Alex Caleap, last year’s RGU ‘mooties’, also came back to offer invaluable advice and encouragement.
The team had been working hard since October researching, writing, discussing and refining the legal position. Despite being located in different countries (Aberdeen, London, Miami, Doha, Abu Dhabi, Saint Petersburg and Bucharest), the team managed to work together and demonstrated dedication.
After submitting two substantial memoranda with detailed legal arguments for Claimant and Respondent, the team went on to participate in online pre-moots organised by the Swiss International Law School (Basel, Switzerland) and Pace University (New York, US). Part of the team also took the opportunity to reunite, taking part in the popular 5th Edinburgh International Willem Vis Pre-Moot.
In Vienna, the team argued in four rounds against the University Paris Ouest Nanterre la Defense (Paris X), Fatih University, Lomonosov Moscow State University and the University of Indonesia. RGU’s counsel benefitted from feedback of many prominent academics and arbitration practitioners who judged the rounds.
Folake Sadiq said: “As co-coach I helped the participants learn more about arbitration including substantive and procedural aspects, brief writing and oral advocacy - it was a fulfilling experience. It was also an enlightening process as it required a lot of research, which aided and improved my knowledge of international commercial arbitration and international sales of goods.
“Taking part in the Vis Moot was quite insightful for me as not only did it make me realise my strengths, it also exposed me to my limitations, experience and knowledge of international commercial arbitration.”
Dr Andrey Kotelnikov, a Lecturer in the Law School and the team coach, said: “It has been a real privilege for me to supervise such an enthusiastic and knowledgeable team. After many months of hard work, determination and stress, tough days and sleepless nights, they had a fantastic learning experience and became a truly great team.
“Participation in the Vis Moot is a wonderful tradition for the university, and I do hope that it will continue for many years. I would like to thank all of the great people we met, the great friendships and the outstanding support we received along our way.”
Anna DuthieCommunications Officer