Tribunal Diversity (part 1)


For a healthy loop of democracy ,its authorities must be securely influential in engaging with the ones they represent. The mechanism upholding the law with the consideration of Judiciary on the one hand and tribunals or the other, the subject foundationally appears to be concatenated provided the workforce area as specific. Diversity in an arbitration tribunal not only ensures equity and equality in regards with gender , ethnicity or culture for appointment and status criteria but at the same time improves the quality of decision based on distinct perspectives resulting in appreciable outcomes similar to its role in Judiciary. Lack of diversity may at times lead to failure on part of the arbitration tribunal to satisfactorily pass awards owing to inaccessible isolated outlook inaugurating different aspects of point of views based on experiences and understanding. There are several factors which need to be curbed by continuous surveillance ranging from Gender to culture.

Whereas, Gender diversity can supposedly introduce lesser conflicts with claim to disputes based on understanding the situation as a gender specific, with the arbitrator so engaged hailing from the gender itself to make the claim satisfactory and for the neglect of society to adapt the means of tribunal to decrease with faith so established. Cultural diversity can conversely provide the measures of interpretation of practices and fundamental reasons for such regular disputes. For the reason is evident, Conscious intellect of the subject merged with perspicacity.

However, the lack of diversity on arbitration tribunals is not anyhow restricted to gender or cultural subjects but potentially extends to several other areas as well which is discussed infra. The concern here is what are the measures that are important to look upto while the formation to ensure the establishment of a culture expanding to different dimensions with society instinctively implanting its faith in the same to justify its inception? And whether diversity actually leads to change of circumstances and satisfactory outcomes ?


Diversity and inclusion, which are the real grounds for creativity, must remain at the center of what we do – Marco Bizzarri

Hailing from distinct backgrounds with a tint of individuality, carrying the essence of peculiar values based on race, gender, caste, creed, economic backdrop, culture, religion and so on continue to have their evident remarkability, to learn from, of their own. The concept of a united reflection at the time of forming a community inclusive of isolated diversified individuals to serve the needs of a particular constituency has always remained indisputably supported with the prospect of supposed objectives to be fulfilled further in a manner that can be adjudged with the idea of heterogeneity of experiences and opinions that can be modified as a solution to the triggered subject matters. Talking about diversity within the tribunal ,from where the social elements seek solutions to disputes with faith of rational justification, it becomes extremely crucial to have parity and lack of equality with the diversity. Indisputably in the arbitration mechanism there exists no obvious achievable demographic that can be mended with given the role of regular courts in domestic and national courts in international arbitration is nominally restricted to the subject they’ve been authorised to expand their jurisdiction within.

However, the lack of the diversity when analysed proves to affect the quality of awards, understanding of the nature of dispute in a greater and familiar manner based on types of it, leading to incapacitation of the jurisdiction. Transparency with the appointments, expanding the engaging criteria can be some of such ideas that can implement the proposed decrease in conflicts and redressal can become much easier to adopt. A diverse tribunal may serve the purpose of attentiveness and understanding of nature it is prepared for with more task-orientated and discrete nominations having the adaptability of contrasting postulations in comparison to a non-diverse tribunal.

~ WHAT IS AN ARBITRATION                                  TRIBUNAL? ~

An arbitral tribunal or arbitration tribunal, also arbitration commission, arbitration committee or arbitration council is a panel of unbiased adjudicators which is convened and sits to resolve a dispute by way of arbitration. The tribunal may consist of a sole arbitrator, or there may be two or more arbitrators, which might include a chairperson or an umpire. Members selected to serve on an arbitration panel are typically professionals with expertise in both law and in friendly dispute resolution (mediation). Some scholars have suggested that the ideal composition of an arbitration commission should include at least one professional in the field of the disputed situation, in cases that involve questions of asset or damages valuation, for instance an economist[1].

Unlike courts, arbitral tribunals in commercial disputes have no inherent power or jurisdiction. Their authority arises from the parties’ contract (albeit that, once selected by the parties, arbitration has the backing of statutes and treaties). In India the Jurisdiction of the arbitration tribunals fall under the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 [2].


[1] J. Gregory Sidak, Economists as Arbitrators, 30 EMORY INT’L L. REV. 2105 (2016),; Joshua B. Simmons, Valuation in Investor-State Arbitration: Toward a More Exact Science, 30 BERKELEY J. INT’L L. 196 (2012).

[2]  Act 26 of 1996

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