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School of Law

Professor Stavros Brekoulakis, LLB (Athens) LLM (London) PhD (London)


Professor of International Arbitration and Commercial Law

Telephone: +44 (0)20 7882 8215
Room Number: Lincoln's Inn Fields


Stavros Brekoulakis is a Professor in International Arbitration at Queen Mary University of London and an associate member of 3 Verulam Buildings (Gray’s Inn). He teaches courses in International Commercial Arbitration, International Construction Contracts and Arbitration, International Investment Arbitration, International Commercial Litigation and Conflict of Laws, International Commercial Law. His academic work includes the leading publications on Third Parties in International Arbitration, Arbitrability, the ICCA-Queen Mary Report on Third Party Funding and numerous publications in leading legal journals and reviews. He is currently working on a book on Policies, including Public Policy in English Arbitration Law (OUP forthcoming). He is a member of the Steering Committee of the UNCITRAL Academic Forum on ISDS, the ICC Commission on Arbitration, an assistant Rapporteur in the International Law Association Committee on International Commercial Arbitration, the General Editor of the Journal of International Dispute Settlement, the Editor-in-Chief of the (CIArb’s) International Journal of Arbitration, Mediation and Dispute Management and Co-editor of the Kluwer’s International Arbitration Law Library series.

Brekoulakis is regularly listed in the Who’s Who Legal: Arbitration, described as “standing out as a first-rate arbitrator and academic; an expert in construction and commercial disputes and is regularly engaged in matters arising out of major infrastructure projects around the world”. He was also listed in the Who’s Who Future Leaders: Arbitration 2017 as one of the ten most highly regarded future leaders, described as “very thorough and professional” and “held in the highest regard”, named as a GAR Thought Leader—Arbitration 2018 and 2019, and nominated for GAR “Best Prepared and Most Responsive Arbitrator” in 2016. He has been appointed in more than 30 arbitrations, as chairman, sole arbitrator, co-arbitrator and emergency arbitrator under the rules of the ICC, LCIA, SCC, DIA, CAS and UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules.

He holds an LLB degree from the National University of Athens, an LLM degree in International Business Law from King’s College London and a PhD degree in Arbitration and Conflict of Laws from Queen Mary University of London (QMUL).


Brekoulakis has been included in the Queen Mary submission for both REF 2008 and REF 2014 on the basis of recommendations from a number of dry runs and external reviews of his work.

His research focuses on a wide range of international arbitration and private international law topics including the role and relevance of third parties in arbitration, public policy, public interest and mandatory rules, decision-making and legal reasoning in private and public justice, arbitration and the rule of law, constitutional aspects of arbitration, third-party funding, procedural justice and international arbitration, value diversity in international arbitration, arbitrability and scope of jurisdiction of private tribunals.

His current research projects revolve around the following areas:

  • Policies, Public Policy and Public Interest in law
  • Consent, Third Parties and Non-Signatories in International Arbitration
  • Legal Reasoning, Decision Making and Impartiality
  • Third Party Funding
  • General Arbitration Scholarship

Brekoulakis is currently leading a major interdisciplinary research project on Impartiality in Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS). This is a three-year research project which employs a mix-empirical methodology (questionnaires, interviews, surveys) aimed at investigating accusations of lack of impartiality in ISDS. The primary academic outputs of the project will be a jointly authored monograph and at least four journal articles submitted to high-ranking journals. Papers on the interim and final research findings will be presented at two workshops and a final conference, and be published in an edited volume, including papers from the academics presented at the workshops and conference.

Public Policy and Public Interest

  • Article, “The Historical Treatment of Arbitration under English Law and the Development of the Policy Favouring Arbitration” Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, (2019) Volume 38, Issue 1 pp.1-28
  • Article, “Public-Private Arbitration and the Public Interest under English Arbitration Law Modern Law Review, 80(1) (2017) 22-56.
  • Book, Policies, including Public Interest in English Arbitration Law, author (Oxford University Press forthcoming 2019)
  • Chapter, “Transnational Public Policy in International Arbitration”, in Ortino & Schultz, Oxford Handbook in International Arbitration (Oxford University Press forthcoming)

Consent, third Parties and non-signatories in international arbitration

  • Monograph, Third Parties in International Commercial Arbitration (Oxford University Press 2011)
  • Article, “Rethinking Consent in International Commercial Arbitration: a New Theory on Non-SignatoriesJournal of International Dispute Settlement, 9(1) (2018) 1-34.  
  • Chapter, “The Various Features of Consent in Arbitration” in Bjorklund, Ferrari and Kroll, Cambridge Compendium of International Commercial and Investment Arbitration (Cambridge University Press forthcoming)
  • Article, “The Relevance of the Interests of the Third Parties in Arbitration: Taking a Closer Look at The Elephant in the Room”, 113 Penn State Law Review, (Summer 2009) pp. 1165-1187
  • Article, “The Effect of an Arbitral Award and Third Parties in International Arbitration: Res Judicata Revisited”, (2005) 16(1), American Review of Int’l. Arbitration (Columbia University) pp177-209.

Legal Reasoning, Decision Making and Impartiality

Third Party Funding

  • ICCA-QMUL Task Force Report on Third Party Funding, co-author with Rusty Park and Catherine Rogers (ICCA 2018)
  • Article, “It’s All About the Money: The Impact of Third-Party Funding on Costs Awards and Security for Costs in International Arbitration”, with Jonas von Goeler (Austrian Yearbook for International Arbitration forthcoming 2017)

General Arbitration Scholarship  


Publications within the REF 2021 period


  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission) Book, Policies, including Public Policy in English Arbitration Law (OUP forthcoming). The book provides a doctrinal account and critical assessment of the policies, including public policy, underpinning English arbitration law.
  • Report of the ICCA-Queen Mary Task Force on Third-Party Funding in International Arbitration (ICCA 2018). A comprehensive study on legal issues surrounding Third-Party Funding in international arbitration.
  • Textbook, on International Construction Contracts and Arbitration (2d ed, Global Arbitration Review 2018). This is the only textbook that offers a detailed discussion and commentary on both substantive aspects of international construction contracts and the dispute resolution methods typically available in such contracts.
  • Edited Book, The Evolution and Future of International Arbitration (Kluwer 2016) 520 pages which includes contributions from all major arbitration scholars and practitioners, as well as distinguished judges, including the UK SC President Lord Neuberger. The book offers an account of the remarkable evolution of international arbitration as an academic subject and as a distinct field of practice.
  • Textbook, International Arbitration Law and Theory (Hart forthcoming). Unlike most existing textbooks on the subject which tend to be practically oriented and aim to inform students as well as practitioners, this is the first textbook to take a theoretical approach international arbitration law.
  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission), Sole Author, “The Historical Treatment of Arbitration under English Law and the Development of the Policy Favouring Arbitration”, OXFORD JOURNAL OF LEGAL STUDIES, (2019) Volume 38, Issue 1 pp.1-28. The article examines the judicial attitude and the development of the policy of English law favouring arbitration. It suggests that, contrary to the prevailing narrative in legal literature, English judicial attitudes in the 18th and 19th centuries never reflected a hostility to arbitration. As is demonstrated, a policy favouring arbitration was introduced by the legislature as early as the end of the 17th century, and was subsequently developed by English courts deciding under statutory law and in the 19th century under the common law. The analysis offers, for the first time, an account of English arbitration as a dispute resolution system which originally emerged as being part of, rather than antagonistic to, the English courts system. Understanding how arbitration developed in England is important not only for historical purposes, but also because it can provide helpful insights into current debates surrounding the legitimacy and potential reform of English arbitration law. Dry run assessments so far have rated this article 4*


  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission), Sole author, “Rethinking Consent in International Commercial Arbitration: A General Theory on Non-Signatories”, JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL DISPUTE SETTLEMENT,1(8) (2018) 1-34. The article is concerned with the role and relevance of non-signatories in international commercial arbitration. The article challenges the efficacy and coherence of the existing arbitration law in this area, and questions whether the traditional concept of consent for arbitration can be reconciled with complex commercial reality and nonsignatories today. Instead, the article submits that a general theory on non-signatories is needed, and proposes that the theoretical basis for finding that non-signatories have rights or obligations in arbitration be shifted from the concept of consent to the concept of dispute. Dry run assessments so far have rated this article 4*.
  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission) First Co-author, “Public-Private Arbitration and the Public Interest under English Arbitration” Law, MODERN LAW REVIEW, 80(1) (2017) 22-56. The article explores the public interest implications which may arise in arbitrations involving public entities. It argues that, due to the lack of a developed administrative law sphere in England and the historical development of arbitration as an exclusively private mode of dispute resolution, the current legal framework of arbitration in England has developed around the private law paradigm of a commercial dispute involving private actors, which cannot adequately account and protect the public interest. To that effect, the article submits an original proposal for the amendment of English arbitration law. Dry run assessments so far have rated this article 4*.
  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission) Sole author, “Public Policy and Judicial Function in English Law. The article has been submitted for publication to a leading UK law review. Taking a historical and doctrinal approach, the article aims to first, clarify the concept of public policy in English law and the appropriate limits of judicial function, and secondly, to critique the majority decision of the SC in the Patel Dry run assessments so far have rated this article 4*.
  • (To be considered for inclusion as part of the REF 2021 submission) “Transnational Public Policy in International Arbitration.” The article has been submitted for publication to a leading UK law review. The article examines the legal function of transnational public policy. It challenges the predominant view in scholarship and in arbitral case law that transnational public policy is a fluid concept that accords arbitrators wide discretion to decide on the basis of non-legal standards such as “morals,” “values” or “principles of universal justice”. By contrast, it is suggested, transnational public policy is a legal doctrine which cannot include anything other than legal norms, in the form of either legal rules or legal principles. Dry run assessments so far have rated this article as 3* and 4*.


Current PhD students

  • Lilit Nagapetyan: Bribery and Corruption in International Arbitration
  • Michaela Halpern: Arbitration and Disputes in Standard-Essential Patents

Public Engagement

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