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Prof Julian D M Lew QC

Julian Lew has been involved with international arbitration for more than 40 years as an academic, counsel and arbitrator. Before 2005, he was a partner and for some years the head of the international arbitration practice group of Herbert Smith. He is now a full-time arbitrator in international commercial and investment disputes. He principally accepts appointments as arbitrator in international commercial and investment disputes, and also advises on procedural and substantive issues in international arbitration.

Professional expertise includes international transactions affecting investments, purchase and sale of corporate entities and assets, joint ventures, oil and gas exploration, development and production agreements, research and development and promotions of pharmaceutical and chemical products, mining and concession arrangements, distribution, agency, licensing and construction contracts, international trade finance, trading arrangements with developing countries, EC law and arbitration arising out of all such transactions.

He has previously advised and represented parties with respect to arbitration proceedings and acted as counsel in many arbitrations in different countries and under all the major arbitration systems. He has been appointed as a sole, presiding and co-arbitrator in arbitrations under the rules of:

  • International Chamber of Commerce (ICC)
  • International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID)
  • London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA)
  • Stockholm Arbitration Institute (SCC)
  • Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC)
  • Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC)
  • World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)
  • Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration (CRCICA)
  • Arbitration Court attached to the Economic Chamber of the Czech Republic
  • UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules
  • Swiss Arbitration Rules

Professor Lew has been Head of the School of International Arbitration, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary University of London since its creation in 1985.

He has written extensively on many different aspects of international arbitration and trade law. He is the author and editor of numerous books and has written innumerable articles on international arbitration.


Banking & Finance

  • Co-arbitrator in Paris based arbitration concerned with liability of a sovereign state in respect of a guarantee given to a bank to cover a performance bond.
  • Chairman of ad hoc arbitration tribunal under English Arbitration Act 1996 between Luxembourg and US entities and a French investor in respect of share holdings and loans made to directors.
  • Chairman of LCIA arbitration concerned with liability for repayment of loan for investment in Russian joint venture.
  • Sole arbitrator in ad hoc arbitration under UNCITRAL Rules concerning liability of guarantor for financial assistance provided for oil exploration contract in the North Sea.
  • Chairman of tribunal in dispute between parties from Peru and Argentina, and the USA, concerning the financing of the development of an electricity project in Latin America with seat in New York.


  • Chairman of tribunal seated in Zurich between Greek and German subsidiaries of two European based multinational engineering companies concerning the breach of an agreement for the joint tender and performance of an infrastructure project in Greece in the transport sector.
  • Chairman of arbitration tribunal in Prague, concerning a property development contract in the Czech Republic. The parties were Czech affiliates controlled in Scandanavia and Australia.
  • Chairman of tribunal appointed under the Rules of the Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration. Parties were from Poland and Egypt. The disputes related to the supply of building materials.
  • Sole arbitrator between French and US companies in connection with termination of exclusive distribution contract for cosmetics products in USA.
  • Sole arbitrator under English Arbitration Act, in dispute between UK distributor of a major Japanese motor car manufacturer and English franchisee.
  • Chairman of tribunal with its seat in London between Indian and US parties concerning damages for the supply of breeder poultry.
  • Co-arbitrator in Hong Kong based ICC arbitration between Japanese and USA parties concerning a contract for the supply of a telecommunication system in the Phillippines.
  • Chairman of tribunal with its seat in Seoul, Korea to determine issues concerning validity of a contract and allegations of illegality.
  • Sole arbitrator in arbitration with seat in Sweden between parties from France and USA. Dispute arose out of a contract for the supply of telecommunications system for an African company.
  • Co-arbitrator in Singapore arbitration between parties from Australia and Peoples Republic of China.
  • Sole arbitrator in Paris in dispute between USA manufacturer and Dutch distributor of outdoor equipment. This case also concerned applications for interim relief (injunctions).
  • Sole arbitrator in London concerning representations given at the time of the sale of a business.
  • Co arbitrator in Paris based ICC arbitration between Japanese automobile manufacturer and exclusive distributer in Eastern European Country.
  • Co-arbitrator of ICC tribunal in dispute between French and Libyan parties out of a shipbuilding contract and the intervention of civil war in Libya.
  • Chairman of ICC tribunal in disputes concerning liability for damages caused during transportation of heavy machinery from African country to USA.
  • Co-arbitrator of tribunal under LCIA Rules in dispute concerning contract for sale and purchase of agricultural products from an African country.
  • Chairman of ICC arbitration tribunal concerning contract for the purchase and delivery of the aircraft fitted and according to the agreed specifications.
  • Chairman SCC arbitration concerning a long term supply contract for geothermal power.
  • Chairman of SIAC arbitration tribunal of dispute arising out of a long term supply contract for coal between parties in Asia.
  • Sole arbitrator under PCA Rules in a dispute between contractor an international institution.


  • Chairman of tribunal in London concerning a contract to build electricity plant in India between Swiss and Indian parties.
  • Chairman of arbitration tribunal in Prague, concerning a property development contract in the Czech Republic. The parties were Czech affiliates controlled in Scandinavia and Australia.
  • Chairman of tribunal in London, concerned with a contract for the supply of a glass fibre reinforced piping system for installation in a chemical factory between parties from Netherlands and Singapore.
  • Chairman of ICC arbitration in Geneva arising out of failed project development in Middle East.
  • Chairman of ICC arbitration between Swiss and Middle Eastern parties concerning breach of agreement for tender for public works contract in transport sector.
  • Chairman of ICC tribunal concerned with dispute between Romanian contractor and state entity in Middle East over construction of a hospital.


Intellectual Property

  • Chairman of ICC arbitration tribunal, with its seat in New York, between Japanese and US companies concerning breach of Japanese patent licence agreement between parties.
  • Chairman of ad hoc arbitration tribunal in England between parties from the US and England in connection with a software licence for the use and development of another software product using the other party's software product.
  • Sole arbitrator in WIPO Rules arbitration concerning rights under pharmaceutical product licence agreement.
  • Chairman of tribunal in Los Angeles, under American Arbitration Association rules, in dispute concerning breach of licence agreement of patented fruit varieties. Parties were from Italy and USA.
  • Sole arbitrator between English and Japanese companies concerning cross royalty obligations under mutual cross licence agreement.
  • Chairman of tribunal with its seat in Calgary, Canada. Dispute related to alleged misuse of know-how provided under a confidentiality undertaking entered into in anticipation of a joint venture between the parties.
  • Co-arbitrator in London based arbitration between English and Korean parties concerning the ownership of and the right to use know-how licensed by one party to the other after the expiry of the licence.
  • Sole arbitrator under ICDR Rules in Toronto between parties from Ontario, Canada and Illinois, USA. The dispute concerned respective rights of parties under a contract for the development, marketing and distribution of medical devices. This concerned in particular the provision of confidential information for the purpose of obtaining FDA approval for the medical device.
  • Sole arbitrator in ICC arbitration between Indian and Latin American parties concerning warranties and obligations in contract for sale of clinical trials and research business.
  • Chairman, LCIA arbitration tribunal concerning determination of joint research and development contract and ownership rights to use products after termination of the Contract.
  • Chairman of ad hoc arbitration in dispute between insured and insurer concerning cover for patent liabilities.
  • Co-arbitrator in ICDR arbitration between Korean and US corporations concerning continuing rights following the termination of a Patent Licence Agreement in connection with telecommunication technology.


  • Co-arbitrator in UNCITRAL arbitration concerning dispute under the Belgo-Luxembourg - Czech Republic bilateral investment treaty. Claim was for expropriation and discriminating treatment.
  • Co-arbitrator in ICSID arbitration between Norwegian investor and Republic of Lithuania.
  • Co-arbitrator in a PCA arbitration under UNCITRAL Rules concerning tax liabilities arising out of an oil and gas product sharing contract and issues of jurisdiction between an investor and an African state.
  • Chairman in arbitration under SIAC Rules concerning an investor and the tax stabilisation regime in the host state.
  • Co-arbitrator in ICSID arbitration concerning an electricity concession agreement between a Polish company and Turkey under the Energy Charter Treaty.


Education and Career: 

1969 - LLB (Hons) University of London
1970 -1981, 2005 - Barrister-at-law, Middle Temple
1976 - Fellow, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
1977 - Doctorat special en droit international - Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium (Magna cum Laude)
1981 - 2005 - Solicitor of the Supreme Court
1985 - to date Attorney at Law - New York
1999 - Chartered Arbitrator
2003 - Queen's Counsel 


Julian has written and edited many books and articles on all aspects of international arbitration. A selection of these titles include:

  • Arbitration in England - with chapters on Ireland and Scotland (Kluwer 2013) joint editor with others
  • Pervasive Problems in International Arbitration (Kluwer 2006) joint editor, with L. Mistelis
  • Parallel State and Arbitral Procedures in International Arbitration (ICC Publication, 2005, joint-editor with B. Cremades)
  • Comparative International Commercial Arbitration (Kluwer 2003, co-author with L. Mistelis and S. Kroll).The Immunity of Arbitrators (Lloyds of London Press, 1990, editor)
  • Contemporary Problems in International Commercial Arbitration (Kluwer, 1987, editor)
  • Applicable Law in International Commercial Arbitration (Oceana 1978)
  • Editor of Arbitration Series published by Kluwer International

For a full list of Julian’s publications please contact the 20 Essex Street’s Assistant to the Arbitrators’ Clerk Sean Hulbert.


Appointments and Society Memberships: 

Panel of Arbitrators

  • Arbitration Court attached to the Economic Chamber of the Czech Republic and the Agricultural Chamber of the Czech Republic
  • BVI International Arbitration Centre
  • Cairo Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration
  • Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • China International Economic Trade Arbitration Commission
  • Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre
  • International Centre for Dispute Resolution (ICDR)
  • Japan Commercial Arbitration Association
  • Korean Commercial Arbitration Association
  • Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration
  • Singapore International Arbitration Centre
  • Vienna Arbitration Institute of Federal Economic Chamber

Arbitration Institute Associations

1988 - 2008 Member of Board of Directors LCIA

2000 - 2006 member of Court of LCIA

Since 2005 - UK Member of the International Court of Arbitration if the ICC

2014 – 2016 Member, Court of Arbitration of SIAC

Since 2014 Member Advisory Council of HKIAC

Arbitration Committees and Working Groups

  • Chairman, Law reform Committee of Chartered Institute of Arbitrators 1991 - 1996.
  • Chairman, Committee on Arbitration Practice Guidelines of Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, 1997 - 2001.
  • Member, ICC Commission on International Commercial Arbitration since 1990.
  • Chairman, ICC Committee on International Report and Arbitration of ICC Commission on International Commercial Arbitration 1992 - 1998.
  • Member of Council of ICC Institute of World Business Law.

Lectures and Teaching: 

Professor and Head of the School of International Arbitration, Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary, University of London since 1986.


Direct Dial: +44(0)20 7842 6712



"Extremely experienced in commercial and investment treaty arbitrations." The Legal 500 UK Bar 2018

"Definitely among the elite arbitrators." The Legal 500 UK Bar 2017

"A very experienced arbitrator." Chambers UK Bar 2018

“Interviewees highlight his ‘thorough analysis of the case and understanding of the issues.'" Chambers Global 2018

"'an excellent arbitrator' who draws widespread praise from peers who note that he is "authoritative, fair and gets straight to the issues'." Who's Who Legal 2018

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