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While it hasn’t been a record year for most arbitral institutions, the demand for arbitration is still very strong. As in the previous years

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, we have compiled the numbers published by the arbitral institutions to date. Recently, the ICC made its 2018 statistics report available for download. We had a look at these numbers and updated this blog post. We will update this blog post again when further statistics become available (1). We also compare other data such as the amount in dispute, the number of emergency or expedited arbitrations and numbers on diversity (2.). Lastly, we add a few notes to the 2018 numbers (3).

1. International Arbitration Statistics

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2. 2018 in numbers[efn_note]n/a = not available.[/efn_note]

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3. Analyzing the 2018 Statistics and Information

Four points are remarkable:

Firstly, the number of new cases in 2018 increased for almost all institutions compared to 2017. Solely, the ICDR, SIAC, HKIAC and SCC recorded a decrease in case numbers. For many institutions, 2018 was a record year or the second best year on the basis of new cases.

It is also noteworthy that the amount in dispute increased in all institutions – except for VIAC. The SCC even reached a record of 13.3 billion EUR despite lower case numbers.

Secondly, for most institutions emergency arbitration has not played a significant role in 2019. 24 applications were filed with the ICC, 12 with the SIAC, four with the SCC, three with the LCIA and HKIAC. Solely the ICDR reported a higher number of emergency applications (92). Expedited procedures, on the other hand, had a greater significance. Most applications for expedited procedures were made to the ICDR (104), followed by the ICC (96), SIAC (59), SCC (52), LCIA (23) and HKIAC (19).

Thirdly, the institutions have correctly recognized that diversity is not only about gender. They have reported about both, gender diversity and arbitrators’ origins.

As to gender diversity, some institutions published information on the total number of female arbitrators in 2018 and/or the number of female arbitrators appointed by the institution.

The SCC recorded the highest total number of female arbitrators with 27 % (a growth of 9 % compared to 2017), followed by the VIAC (24.6 %, growth of 8 %) and LCIA (23 %, decrease of 1 %). The highest percentage of female arbitrators appointed by the institutions were reached by:

  1. VIAC: 43.8 % (decrease of 13.8 %)
  2. LCIA: 43 % (decrease of 9%)
  3. SIAC: 34.3 % (decrease of 4.6 %).

As to the arbitrators’ origins, here it is striking that arbitrators from Europe, especially the United Kingdom, are always among the top three. Arbitrators from the UK rank first with the LCIA and the ICC, second with the SIAC. With the HKIAC, arbitrators from the UK rank either first (appointed by the institution) or second (appointed by parties or co-arbitrators). However, it should be noted that most parties have a common law background in these cases. In that case scenario, arbitrators from the UK seem to enjoy a special reputation.

Fourthly, surprisingly the number of investment cases remain stable or keep rising. In times of the ECJ’s Achmea decision


, one could think that investment arbitration has lost its significance. However, the 2018 case numbers show a different picture. The number of new ICSID cases further increased from 53 to 56.


Dr. Markus Altenkirch LL.M. is a member of Baker McKenzie's Dispute Resolution teams in Düsseldorf and London . Markus focuses on international arbitration and currently represents clients in ICC, DIS, LCIA, and HKIAC arbitrations. Markus primarily advises on Post-M&A as well as construction disputes. Moreover, Markus regularly advises on disputes in the Pharmaceutical industry. In 2021, Markus has started his own podcast series: #zukunft. Markus, and his colleague Lisa Reiser, interview leading arbitration practitioners and in-house lawyers on the future of international arbitration. Markus teaches at the University of Mainz and regularly publishes in the field of international arbitration. He is a contributor and editor for Global Arbitration News. Markus Altenkirch can be reached at and +49 211 311160 and +44 20 7919 1000.


Malika Boussihmad is a member of the Dispute Resolution team at Baker McKenzie in Frankfurt. She is currently a law clerk and is specialized on international arbitration. Malika Boussihmad can be reached at and +49 69 299080.