Volume 35 (2018) / Issue 1
New technologies such as Big Data, blockchain, machine learning, and text-mining have made it to the legal world, simplifying all phases of the dispute resolution process. Arbitration and these new technologies share a mutually beneficial relationship. On the one hand, new technologies will improve efficiency, cut costs, promote the expansion of arbitration into new segments of the market, and improve outcomes for clients. On the other hand, the proliferation of new technologies will inevitably generate disputes that arbitration is best-suited to resolve. For example, although self-execution limits certain litigation risks concerning the performance of smart contracts, conflicts regarding their definition, interpretation, and general framework are likely to arise. The delocalized nature of the arbitral regime, the flexibility of proceedings, and the straightforward enforcement of awards are key features that make arbitration the optimal dispute resolution mechanism for new technology disputes. New technologies can thus reinforce arbitral proceedings, and arbitration can provide insurance to these emerging practices – these reciprocal benefits should be exploited.
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