KU News Release

Dec. 6, 2011
Contact: Sarah Shebek, School of Law, 785-864-2388

Law professor to speak in Palestine promoting arbitration efforts

Chris Drahozal

More Information

LAWRENCE— Dispute resolution is a useful skill anywhere in the world, but it’s essential in places like Palestine, where disputes with Israel continually make headlines.

Most recently, Israel decided to withhold taxes it previously collected for the Palestinian Authority, angered over Palestine’s efforts to gain recognition as a state. The denied funds threatened the salaries of thousands of employees in Palestine, but it took almost a month for Israel to reinstate the tax transfers.

Despite another governmental conflict, Israel and Palestine rely heavily on each other to sustain healthy economies. On Dec. 7-8, an arbitration workshop focusing on discovering ways for businesses to work together and resolve conflict will take place in Ramallah, Palestine. Chris Drahozal, the John M. Rounds Distinguished Professor at the University of Kansas School of Law, will be a featured presenter at the “Teach In” on International Arbitration, which brings arbitration scholars from around the world together with Palestinian lawyers and business people. The goal of the workshop is to prepare Palestinians to collaborate in the newly conceived Jerusalem Arbitration Center.

The Center was formed to use arbitration to resolve commercial disputes between Israelis and Palestinians. Each year, Israel and Palestine engage in an estimated U.S. $4 billion in trade, and effective resolution of disputes is essential to advance their economic relationship. The center is a joint venture between the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) branches in Israel and Palestine. Although ICC Israel is long-established, ICC Palestine just started this year. The conference will help the newcomers catch up in their understanding of international arbitration.

Arbitration experts like Drahozal hope their shared knowledge will have a lasting impact on the region’s future.

“My role in the process is a small one, but my hope is that the conference, and events like it, can help in setting up processes for the fair resolution of business disputes between Palestinians and Israelis,” Drahozal said.

The conference begins with a welcome address by Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. Drahozal will conclude the two-day event with a presentation on recognition and enforcement of international arbitration awards. The conference was organized by Catherine Rogers, a law professor at Penn State University. Drahozal and Rogers are co-reporters on the American Law Institute’s Restatement, Third, of the U.S. Law of International Commercial Arbitration.

Drahozal is an internationally known scholar whose writing focuses on the law and economics of dispute resolution, particularly arbitration. He is the author of multiple books and numerous articles on commercial arbitration, and has taught and given presentations on the subject in Europe, Canada and the United States.

The University of Kansas is a major comprehensive research and teaching university. University Relations is the central public relations office for KU's Lawrence campus.

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