Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Teams

Now in its 19th year, the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot has become one of the most prestigious moot court competitions in the world. It takes place every year in Vienna, Austria and it sees participants from almost 300 law schools, coming from more than 60 countries. This moot is an amazing opportunity to foster the study of international commercial law and rules of arbitration for the resolution of international business. Every year, students study a problem based on an international sales transaction subjected to the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (CISG) and involving procedural issues governed by one of the many arbitration rules from arbitration providers all around the world.

Students write memoranda for claimant and respondent and prepare oral argument based upon the memoranda. Every effort is made to have civil law schools argue against common law schools, so each may learn from approaches taken by persons trained in another legal culture. Similarly, the teams of arbitrators judging each round are from both common law and civil law backgrounds. The foremost scholars in the field of international sales law and international arbitration come to Vienna to act as arbitrators and judge the various teams in different stages of the competition.

In addition to the VIS moot in Vienna, a sister moot of the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration moot has been created in 2003 and it takes place every year in Hong Kong. The Vis Moot (East) uses the same Problem and the rules are essentially the same as the Moot that takes place in Vienna.

Loyola Law School participates to the VIS with two teams, one for the main VIS moot in Vienna and another one for the Vis Moot (East) in Hong Kong.

Website of the moot: http://www.cisg.law.pace.edu/vis.html (Vienna) and http://www.cisgmoot.org/index.html (Hong Kong)

Size of the team: 10 students, 6 for the Vienna Team and 4 for the Hong Kong Team

Units: 3

Pre-requisites: While there is no specific pre-requisite, students should take “International Commercial Arbitration” and “Law of Sales” courses.

Faculty Supervision: Professor John T. McDermott and Professor Bryan Hull

Application: Try outs for both the Vienna and Hong Kong VIS are held simultaneously every year in late June. Look out for announcements of dates of try outs in April/May.