DEBATE - At least one member of three-member arbitral tribunals should be a non-lawyer with experience in the subject matter of the dispute


Event Details

12th Jul 2023
17:30 - 21:00
FTI Consulting, 200 Aldersgate, Aldersgate Street, London EC1A 4HD

Event Information

The CIArb London Branch invites you to join us for our next seminar, which focuses on the relative merits of lawyer and non-lawyer arbitrators. FTI is kindly hosting and sponsoring.

This debate will analyse the extent to which sectoral expertise is a more important consideration than legal qualifications when selecting Tribunal members. Each debater will adopt a fixed position, which may not reflect his/her own views. This debate will explore serious issues and themes arising in an entertaining way. After the debate, the moderator will lead a further discussion among the judges, with the debaters and the audience invited to participate.

Panels and Timings:

In Person Registration & Coffee (1730-1800)

Introduction (1800-1810):

Debate on the Motion (1810-1840)

Discussion: Moderator and Judges and Audience Q&A (1840-1915)

Concluding remarks (1915)

Karina Albers, Arbitrator, Chair of the CIArb London Branch

Drinks, canapés and networking


There will be no charge to attend this event, but prior registration is required.

Please register by using the following link:


Natasha O’Kane, Marketing Executive, FTI:

Mob: 00 44 (0) 781 611 1376. Email:

The event is kindly hosted and sponsored by FTI Consulting

Speakers Bios

Aashna Agarwal

Aashna is an associate in the international arbitration team at Allen & Overy in London, where she represents clients in both international commercial and investment treaty arbitrations. She is a dual qualified lawyer in England & Wales and India. Aashna has handled complex and high-value disputes across various sectors, with a particular focus on the energy and construction sectors. She also has experience in arbitration related court proceedings in England and other jurisdictions. She also advises clients on public international law, commercial law and business & human rights issues. Aashna has a keen interest in pro bono work and diversity and inclusion initiatives.

Tope Adeyemi

Tope Adeyemi is a Barrister and Arbitrator practising from 33 Bedford Row Chambers in London. Dual qualified in England & Wales and Nigeria, her practice focuses on Regulatory Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution. Tope has appeared before a wide range of courts and tribunals and acts as Counsel and Arbitrator in institutional and ad hoc arbitrations. Additionally, she undertakes adjudications as a member of the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution’s Consumer Panel (CEDR). Tope is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and currently serves as Honorary Secretary of the London Branch Committee.

Tim Battrick

Tim Battrick is Managing Director at FTI Consulting. He is a Chartered Accountant who specialises in valuation issues arising from litigation and arbitration. He advises on the quantification of lost profits and the valuation of shares, businesses and other assets.

Tim has been appointed as an expert witness and has testified in both litigation and arbitration matters. Matters on which Tim has been instructed as an expert include the assessment of lost profits following an alleged breach of contract, the valuation of shares in a claim for unfair prejudice by a minority shareholder, the valuation of shares subject to an option agreement, and the valuation of shares in the context of a divorce.

Tim is recommended in the 2022 Who’s Who Legal guide to expert witnesses in commercial litigation and the 2023 guide to future leaders in arbitration.

Tim also advises clients on valuation issues outside of disputes and has advised the buyers and sellers of shareholdings, stakeholders in financial restructurings, companies requiring valuations for financial reporting, and parties seeking to license intellectual property rights.

Jeffrey G. Benz

Jeff is an accomplished advocate, international commercial arbitrator and mediator, and a former General Counsel of the US Olympic Committee and other sports entities. His caseload includes media, technology, entertainment, employment, commercial, and sports cases. Having been a Court of Arbitration for Sport arbitrator and mediator since 2000, he also has chaired the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s Infractions Referral Comm. and was a member of its Independent Resolution Panel. He is qualified as a US lawyer (California/Colorado/Hawaii/New York) and as a barrister in England and Wales. The BBC noted he is “widely regarded as amongst the most experienced judges” in world sport. According to Who’s Who Legal UK Bar, he is “’widely recognised for his first-rate arbitration practice’ and clients note he is ‘in a class of his own’ when it comes to complex sports disciplinary disputes.” A Fellow of both the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and the College of Commercial Arbitrators, and a CEDR and IMI certified mediator, he has AB and MBA degrees from the University of Michigan and a JD degree from the University of Texas. Jeff teaches sports dispute resolution around the world, most recently for Pepperdine University’s world-leading Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution. Recently recognized by Best Lawyers as “Best Arbitration Lawyer” in Los Angeles, Jeff splits his time between London and Los Angeles where he is affiliated with JAMS and 4 New Square Chambers. Well-versed in China, Jeff is also a proud BAC/BIAC and CIETAC commercial arbitrator.

Paul Kinninmont

Paul is an effective and commercially minded disputes lawyer and arbitrator. His extensive experience includes full trials, appeals, injunctions, interim applications, jurisdictional battles and enforcement proceedings across several sectors and jurisdictions. Paul often helps sophisticated clients to realise business objectives through mediation and negotiation. He also helps multinationals to navigate risks arising from international treaties, international sanctions and bribery issues.

Recent representative matters as lawyer include: settling consolidated $2.8 billion LCIA arbitration proceedings arising from joint venture shareholder documentation; successfully resisting enforcement of a $900 million ICSID award in the High Court; ICC dispute involving coal and coal transportation issues valued over $100 million; LCIA claims totalling c.$110 million against an oil exploration subsidiary; settling $1.1 billion BVI enforcement proceedings on appeal to the Privy Council.

Paul accepts appointments as arbitrator and has rendered 16 New York Convention awards through various arbitral institutions. He has another arbitration currently underway.

Paul was called to the English Bar by Middle Temple. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Arbitrators. Paul serves on the Committees of the CIArb London Branch and the Energy Arbitration Club, proactively representing members and stakeholders on behalf of the profession.

Ayse Yazir

Ayse Yazır joined Bench Walk Advisors in 2018 and is Global Head of Origination, based in London.

She has an outstanding reputation in the litigation funding industry, where she originates, underwrites, and monitors funding in various litigation sectors including international and commercial arbitration, insolvency, class actions and global litigation matters as well as law firm and corporate portfolio arrangements and defense funding. Prior to joining Bench Walk Advisors, Ayse worked as a Technical Manager in Arthur J Gallagher’s dispute resolution team where she worked with international law firms and litigation funders around the world to deliver funding and insurance solutions. She has seven years senior technical underwriting experience with a global funder based in London, where she reviewed over 400 cases a year.

Ayse has been instrumental in drafting rules on third-party funding for both UNCITRAL and ICSID and is recognised as a ‘Thought Leader: Third-Party Funding’ by Who’s Who Legal for three consecutive years, and has ranked at Chambers & Partners, Legal500 and Lawdragon as a leading funder. She won ‘Leading Dispute Resolution Expert’ at the Lawyer Monthly Awards 2020, 2021, and 2022, “Litigation Funder-UK” by Finance Monthly Awards 2021 and 2022, and regularly speaks at key industry conferences, including GAR, Legal 500 GC Summit and EFILA Annual Conference. She has been recently named a woman leader (2022) in the legal industry by Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar magazines and chosen as the “Person of the Week” by Green.Org.

Karthik Balisagar

Karthik Balisagar is a Senior Managing Director at FTI Consulting and is based in London. He is a member of the Economic and Financial Consulting segment. He also leads the FTI Consulting Economic and Financial practice in India. Karthik has 17 years’ experience in valuation and transaction consulting. At FTI Consulting, Karthik specialises in valuation issues in the context of international arbitration and litigation.

Karthik has prepared or assisted with the preparation of expert reports for submission to Singapore, UK, Dutch and EU courts, as well as in arbitrations under ICC, HKIAC, ICSID, UNCITRAL and LCIA rules.

Karthik was also part of the expert panel of valuers advising the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore with respect to policy on intellectual property valuation. He is currently a member of the International Valuation Standards Council (IVSC) Europe Board & Asia Committee, where he assists the board in setting and harmonising international valuation standards across jurisdictions.

Steven Finizio

Steven Finizio is a partner in Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP, based in London. He sits as an arbitrator and has acted as counsel in commercial and treaty arbitrations in matters involving the laws of jurisdictions in Europe, Asia, Africa, South America, and the United States, as well as in regional and other international courts. He is a member of the LCIA Court and the GIAC Advisory Council. He has assisted in drafting new arbitration legislation and was part of the team that won a landmark decision in the first freedom of expression case in the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights. He teaches international arbitration, including as Professor of Practice at SOAS University of London, and is on the faculty of the Cologne Arbitration Academy as well as academies in Africa and Asia. His publications include “A Practical Guide to International Commercial Arbitration: Assessment, Planning and Strategy” and “International Commercial Arbitration,” in The Law of Transnational Business Transactions.

Karina Albers FCIArb

Karina Albers FCIArb is a full-time commercial arbitrator and mediator based in the United Kingdom. Her profession as arbitrator and mediator has been built from her experience in derivative trading, the maritime industry and commodity trade. Her career hitherto as derivative trader, chartering manager, broker, agent, expert and consultant enables her to service an ever-increasing complex and diverse world of disputes. She has received over 60 appointments so far, participated in hearings and has published over 20 awards with claims amounting up to USD 15 million under LMAA, LCIA, SIAC and GMAA rules. The type of disputes she covers involve demurrage/despatch/laytime, liability/cost for cancelling of charter parties, speed and performance claims, allocation of port disbursements, insurance claims, bunker claims, freight and TCE, cargo claims both for dry and wet claims, Energy and Commodity disputes. Karina has acted as sole arbitrator, sole arbitrator by default and as part of a tribunal of three. She passes on her passion for arbitration by volunteering regularly for Vis-Moot and IMLAM as well as mentoring a number of young legal professionals.

Her Expertise:

Consultancy, arbitration and expert witness services for charter market rates, OTC commodity derivative trading and broking and commercial risk management of dry and gas charter rates, fertiliser, freight derivatives (FFAs), container swaps, coal and iron ore derivatives including options as well as OTC electronic trading platforms, clearing and settlement. An accredited Expert at the Federal Court of New York and acted as expert in leading cases in London, New York and Singapore. NGO representative at the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL). Member of the Baltic Exchange, the GMAA, the Expert Witness Institute and ICCA, aspiring full member of the LMAA, Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and Chair of the London Branch, she is Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Arbitrators and a panel member of the SCMA Singapore.

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