The Ethos of Arbitration

The Oxford Handbook of International Arbitration, Forthcoming

King's College London Law School Research Paper 2019-23

28 Pages Posted: 21 Jun 2019 Last revised: 6 Sep 2019

See all articles by Thomas Schultz

Thomas Schultz

King's College London; University of Geneva

Date Written: June 17, 2019


Imagine two groups of people. The first group is composed of a colourful patchwork of individuals: some young, some old; some wild, some tame; some from the left, some from the right; some chagrined spirits, some solar souls; some cultivating friendship and warmth, some pursuing individuality and jealousy; some free, some revering Calvin, some fearing djinns; some machos and some tiptoeing angels; some male, some female, and some unclear; some enjoying this very text, some already hating it for its indecorousness in the legal academy. The second group is composed almost exclusively of white men aged 50 to 70, properly and somewhat strictly educated in European or North American universities, more possessive than generous, overworked and quite unhappy, rather disillusioned, all dark-suits-and-sober-ties, intellectually somewhat insecure, socially somewhat haughty.

Who would you choose?

This paper discusses the prevailing spirit, attitudes, aspirations in the arbitration community – its ethos, then – and how it likely affects decision-making within the field and the future of the field itself.

Keywords: arbitration, ethos, decision-making, arbitrators

JEL Classification: K33, K41

Suggested Citation

Schultz, Thomas, The Ethos of Arbitration (June 17, 2019). The Oxford Handbook of International Arbitration, Forthcoming; King's College London Law School Research Paper 2019-23. Available at SSRN: or

Thomas Schultz (Contact Author)

King's College London ( email )

Somerset House East Wing
London, WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

University of Geneva ( email )

102 Bd Carl-Vogt
Genève, CH - 1205

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