DRS Hosts Fourth Annual Vis Practice Moot

March 24, 2010

Largest Vis Practice Moot in the World

Fordham Law's Dispute Resolution Society hosted its Fourth Annual Vis Practice Moot the weekend of February 19-21, bringing together competitors from 43 law schools on four continents.  More than 450 competitors, coaches, and volunteer arbitrators gathered at Fordham, maintaining the event’s record as the largest Vis practice moot in the world.

Teams from as far away as Lapland, São Paulo, and Tokyo traveled to Fordham to further develop the substance and presentation of their arguments in preparation for the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moots, which will take place in Vienna and Hong Kong in mid-March.

In the Vis Moots, teams of two students represent both the claimant and respondent in alternating rounds.  The procedural and substantive matters surrounding the dispute are based on a cross-border contract for a sale of goods and arise out of the context of an international arbitration dispute under specific arbitration rules.  The teams must submit briefs for both the claimant and respondent prior to the competitions.  Panels of three arbitrators preside over the oral arguments.  The Fordham Practice Moot replicates the setting of these oral arguments in Vienna and Hong Kong.

The Fordham Moot is also highly anticipated as a social and educational event, where those studying and practicing commercial arbitration meet to network and exchange ideas.  After a full first day including four rounds of arbitration moots, participants gathered in the Law School’s McNally Amphitheatre for a formal
 DRS Practice Moot Editors Anand George '10 and Jackie Elson '10.
welcome by Professor Jacqueline Nolan-Haley, Director of the Conflict Resolution & ADR Program, Society Chairman Michael Camarinos '10, and the event organizers, Vis Practice Moot Editors Jacqueline Elson '10 and Anand George '10.

Renowned commercial law expert Professor Dr. Peter Huber of the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz delivered the keynote address entitled “From Ruthless Moths and Dirty Words…Transatlantic Commercial Litigation between Conflict and Cooperation.”
Vikki Rogers, Adjunct Professor of Law at Fordham and Director of the Institute of International Commercial Law at Pace University Law School, introduced Professor Huber.  She also spoke about the development and importance of pre-moots and the overall culture of the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot.

After the keynote speech, participants gathered for an evening cocktail reception at the top of Fordham’s Lowenstein building.  Day two of the event featured an additional three rounds of arbitration moots.
 Participants gathered in the atrium.

“The practice moot was once again a source of great pride for the Society.  I am particularly thankful to Jackie and Anand, who worked tirelessly, beginning last summer, to ensure the success of this world-famous event,” said Camarinos.  “We are also extremely grateful to all of our volunteer arbitrators for providing such a valuable educational experience to the competitors, and to the Society members and alumni for assisting in preparation and throughout the weekend.”

Fordham Law's Dispute Resolution Program is ranked 10th in the nation by the 2010 U.S. News & World Report.  In addition to hosting the Vis Practice Moot, the Dispute Resolution Society competes in national and international mediation, negotiation, and arbitration competitions, hosts an annual symposium attended by hundreds of academics and professionals in the ADR field, and teaches a course on negotiation techniques to local high school students at MLK Jr. High School.  For more information, please visit the DRS Web site.