Vis Moot Team Competes from Hong Kong to Vienna - International Commitment Evident


Second-best team award

Part 2 of 2 Stories:
This year, for the first time ever, Miami Law will participate in the Vis Moot East in Hong Kong, in addition to the Vis Moot Vienna. The International Moot Court team has doubled in size to eight students to accommodate the new competition.

Nicholas Fernandez, J.D., and Jordan Isicoff, J.D. will round out the Vienna team, with coaching by Paula Arias, Director the International Moot Court Program; John H. Rooney, Jr., international arbitrator and counsel, and Miami Law adjunct professor; and Sandra Friedrich, Director of the White & Case International Arbitration LL.M. Program and Lecturer in Law.

On Team Hong Kong, Miami Law will be represented by three International Arbitration LL.M. students – Ewelina Bzducha from Poland, an International Arbitration Institute Scholar who previously worked as legal intern for the Warsaw office of Allen & Overy, Clifford Chance and White & Case; Supritha Suresh, a native of India who holds Miami Law’s prestigious Young ICCA Scholarship; and Takashi Yokoyama, a native of Japan and Yamaguchi Scholar; as well as J.D. candidate Joshua Bautz.

The Moot program has also added two assistant coaches this year who are students in the International Arbitration LL.M. program with previous trial and arbitration experience: Nawazish Chowdhury, a U.K. barrister, and José Ponce, a lawyer from El Salvador.

World’s Largest International Arbitration Moot

The Vis Moot (Vienna) is the largest international arbitration moot in the world with student teams from over 300 law schools and over 60 countries competing. Leading arbitration counsel, arbitrators, and academics serve as coaches and judges. The Vis Moot has been held annually in Vienna, Austria since 1994. This year, it will take place from April 7-13, 2017.  

The Vis Moot (East) in Hong Kong is the sister competition to the Vis Moot in Vienna, Austria, and has been held in the former British colony since 2004 with over 100 teams attending. This year, it will take place from March 26 to April 2. The Vis Moot (East) is not a regional elimination round to the Vis Moot (Vienna), but rather they are two separate competitions (albeit based on the same hypothetical legal problem) with separate winners.

Preparation Via Pre-Moots

To prepare for the final argument rounds in Hong Kong and Vienna, students and coaches also attend several pre-moot competitions around the globe. These incude: the Fordham Pre-Moot in New York City February 25-26; the CAM-CCBC Pre-Moot, in São Paulo, Brazil March 11-12; the Shanghai Pre-Moot in China March 21-25; the Hanseatic CAM-CCBC Pre-Moot in Hamburg, Germany April 4- 5; and the Graf & Pitkowitz Pre-Moot at the Austrian Supreme Court in Vienna, Austria on April 7.

Of particular note this year, the CAM-CCBC arbitral rules of the Chamber of Commerce Brazil-Canada will be used in the Vis Moot and the organization is putting on a prestigious pre-moot at its headquarters in São Paulo, to which Miami Law received a coveted invitation. It is the first time in the history of the Vis Moot that rules of a Latin American arbitration institution will be used.

Miami Law’s Team

Most of Miami Law's international arbitration mooties are students in the White & Case International Arbitration LL.M. Program. The program, under the leadership of Professor Jan Paulsson, provides an unparalleled individualized curriculum encompassing international commercial and investment arbitration. Additionally, it offers unique practical learning opportunities for a small group of top-quality students from around the globe, wishing to acquire in-depth knowledge and skills in the field of international arbitration as a platform for a successful career.

The program - the only one of its kind in the United States – is open to U.S. and foreign-trained law graduates and attorneys, and is ideal for newcomers to the field or experienced practitioners looking to enrich their skills and knowledge. Again, this year, Miami Law will offer a half-tuition merit scholarship to a Vis Moot participant (student, coach, or arbitrator; Vis Moot or Vis Moot East).

Read Part 1: Double Win for Ukranian LLM Student