The Independence and Impartiality of ICSID Arbitrators: Current case law, alternative approaches, and improvement suggestions

By Maria Nicole Cleis, Published by Brill | Nijhoff, June 2017

The legitimacy of investor–state arbitration is a much-debated topic, with arbitrators’ independence and impartiality being one of the core concerns. The author explores how unbiased decision-making is ensured under the ICSID Convention. Juxtaposing existing disqualification decisions in the ICSID system against corresponding requirements in related dispute settlement systems, the book argues that the current approach to disqualification requests against ICSID arbitrators is too exacting considering the high stakes of investor–state disputes. The author’s analysis of the status quo is followed by novel suggestions for reforms (including a proposal for ICSID-specific guidelines on conflict of interest). Available at