Dispute Resolution Mechanisms in the Petroleum Sector

5. Gender and Petroleum Disputes

There is a known lack of gender diversity in international arbitration tribunals. One of the reasons behind this is the fact that female legal practitioners often are not able to move into top positions in the legal profession.

Source: Chamber Student, ‘2014 gender in the law survey’

This problem is exacerbated in arbitration as appointment procedures are not always transparent and an unconscious gender bias may come into play. Initiatives such as ArbitralWomen fulfil the function of locating female legal professionals.

The statistics from major arbitration institutions confirm the extent of the current gender imbalance in arbitrator appointments:

SIAC (2016)

12% of arbitrator appointments were female

ICC (2016)

Women appointments were around 20%

LCIA (2016)

Just over 20% appointment of female arbitrators

SCC (2015)

6.5% of party appointed arbitrators were women

ICSID (1972-2014)

Female arbitrators appointed were less than 6%