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The Honorable Charles N Brower

Judge Brower's 55-year career in the law has combined extensive practice at the bar with distinguished public service, both national and international, concentrating during 30 years in the fields of public international law and international dispute resolution.

Following eight years with the international law firm White & Case LLP in New York City (1961-69), acting both as a commercial trial and appellate attorney and as criminal defense counsel in prominent cases, Judge Brower resigned his partnership to serve for four years (1969-73) in the United States Department of State in Washington, DC, where as Acting Legal Adviser he was the chief lawyer of the Department and principal international lawyer for the United States Government. Thereafter, he rejoined White & Case LLP, co-founding its Washington, DC office, where his practice, originally concentrated in the litigation of administrative and public law cases, came to be comprised almost exclusively of substantial international arbitrations.

He has served continuously since 1983 as a Judge of the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal in The Hague, The Netherlands, where he sat full-time from 1984 to 1988. That service was interrupted for some months in 1987 by White House service as Deputy Special Counsellor to President Reagan. While continuing to serve in The Hague on a part-time basis, Judge Brower resumed partnership in White & Case LLP from 1988 until joining 20 Essex Street Chambers. As of 2014 he also serves as a Judge ad hoc at the International Court of Justice.

Judge Brower has served as Judge Ad Hoc of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, as a member of the Register of Experts of the United Nations Compensation Commission in Geneva (UNCC), and as a member of the Panels of Conciliators and Arbitrators of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) (a member of the World Bank Group). He has represented various governments in proceedings before the International Court of Justice (World Court) and is a member of the panels of arbitrators of a number of arbitral institutions around the world. As counsel or arbitrator he has handled cases on all six continents, principally under the rules of the ICC, UNCITRAL, the LCIA, the AAA, the UNCC, ICSID, SCC, ARIAS and LMAA. These cases have involved a wide variety of commercial disputes as well as issues of public international law, particularly involving the oil and gas sector, major infrastructural projects, expropriations, and other investment disputes, including ones arising under both bilateral and multilateral investment treaties (such as NAFTA and the Energy Charter Treaty).

Most recently Judge Brower's peer listings have been capped by The American Lawyer's 2013 "Focus Europe" Supplement, which described him as "the reigning king of international arbitrators," listing him for its third consecutive biennial survey (following 2011 and 2009) as No. 1 of its "Top Ten Arbitrators" with 27 qualifying arbitrations (commercial cases involving $500 million or more and treaty-based investment disputes in which a minimum of $100 million is in issue). Judge Brower is one of only three arbitrators to have been included among the "Top Ten Arbitrators" in every one of these biennial surveys since they were first published in 2005. In addition, Chambers 2011 UK Directory stated that Judge Brower "has earned a reputation as one of the leading arbitrators at the UK Bar. He is described as 'one of the most sought out arbitrators in the world, particularly in connection with investment treaty disputes.' In 2014, Judge Brower became the first inductee into the Legal Media Group Euromoney 'Hall of Fame' for 'significant contributions to commercial arbitration during his career,' and Lawyer Monthly declared him to be 'United Kingdom Commercial Arbitration Lawyer of the Year.'

Judge Brower has served as President of the American Society of International Law, Governor of the American Bar Association, Chair of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration, and on the Executive Council of the International Law Association. He has published and spoken around the world on international law and international dispute resolution. He has been a Visiting Fellow at Cambridge University (Jesus College and the Lauterpacht Research Centre for International Law) and had been selected as John A. Ewald, Jr. Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of Virginia School of Law. In 2009 Judge Brower was awarded the American Society of International Law's prestigious Manley O. Hudson Medal for "pre-eminent scholarship and achievement in international law . . . without regard to nationality," which honor until then had been bestowed on 29 persons, including 10 non-American citizens, during the 53 years since it had been created. In 2010 Judge Brower received the Stefan A. Riesenfeld Award from the University of California's Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall)  in recognition of "his outstanding achievements and contributions in the field of international law."

In 2013 he received both the Lifetime Achievement Award of the American Bar Association's Section of International Law and the Pat Murphy Award of the Institute for Transnational Arbitration of the Center for American and International Law "For Exceptional Civic Contributions and Extraordinary Professional Achievements in International Arbitration." 2015 saw Judge Brower as only the fourth ever recipient of the Global Arbitration Review Lifetime Achievement Award.

For Extensive CV click here


  • Public international law
  • International arbitration
  • Investment disputes
  • Oil and gas
  • Infrastructure projects
  • General commercial matters
  • Construction disputes
  • Treaty-based disputes

Education and Career: 

Harvard College, B.A., cum laude (1957). Fulbright Scholar (1957-1958) at the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitaet, Bonn, and Die Hochschule fuer Politik, now Otto-Suhr-Institut of the Free University of Berlin. Harvard Law School, J.D. (1961). Visiting Fellow, Jesus College (2001) and the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law (2001, 2005, 2010), Cambridge University.


The Iran-United States Claims Tribunal, with Jason D. Brueschke, Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague, 1998 (awarded the Certificate of Merit of the American Society of International Law in 1998); International Arbitration in the 21st Century (Co-edited with Richard B. Lillich), Transnational Publishers, 1983; numerous book chapters, articles and shorter publications.

Appointments and Society Memberships: 

President, Chairman, Presiding Arbitrator, Sole Arbitrator or co-arbitrator in numerous arbitrations under ICSID, ICC, LCIA, SCC, ARIAS, LMAA and UNCITRAL Rules, as well as ad hoc arbitrations, over the past 30 years; arbitrations include those based on bilateral investment treaties and multilateral ones, e.g., NAFTA and ECT. Member, Register of Experts, United Nations Compensation Commission; Counsel and Advocate in cases before the International Court of Justice. Panel of Arbitrators; Kuala Lumpur Regional Centre for Arbitration, HKIAC Panel for Financial Services Disputes.

Lectures and Teaching: 

Lectured at The Hague Academy of International Law (1990). Member, Board of Editors, American Journal of International Law. Guest lectures at Yale University School of Law; Duke University School of Law; City University, Hong Kong; University of Leiden; Harvard Law School; University of Mississippi School of Law and Croft Institute for International Studies, University of Mississippi; University of Baltimore School of Law; Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy; Florida State University College of Law; George Washington University School of Law; Villanova University School of Law; Max-Planck-Institut fuer Auslaendisches Oeffentliches Recht und Voelkerrecht, Heidelberg; and Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitaet.


Who's Who Legal, Arbitration 2018: "The 'exceptional' Charles Brower boasts 35 years’ experience in the field of international arbitration, an area in which he is described by peers as 'the godfather'."

Who's Who Legal, Arbitration 2017: "a worldwide name".

Named by the American Lawyer's "Focus Europe" June 2013 "the reigning king of international arbitrators," being No. 1 on its list of "Top Ten Arbitrators" for the third successive biennial survey (following 2011 and 2009, in which he was also named the world's "busiest" arbitrator);

Who's Who Legal, Commercial Arbitration 2010: one of the 20 "Most highly regarded individuals" worldwide in international arbitration; "a 'big name' whose work is 'absolutely fantastic'"

Chambers Global 2008 : "generally seen as one of the best arbitrators around when it comes to foreign investment cases"; Global Counsel June 2002 : "one of the top ten international arbitration specialists in the world".

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