Collaborative calendar brings together virtual events on the most diverse ADR topics and confirms São Paulo in the international map of the sector events
By Sérgio Siscaro
In recent years, Brazil has been experiencing a growth in the volume of procedures using alternate dispute resolution (ADR) means. The community of professionals working in this area has benefited since 2018 from the São Paulo Arbitration Week (SPAW) – a week dedicated to events that allow the exchange of experiences, access to international trends and the connection among participants.
Conceived by the CAM-CCBC, the third edition of SPAW will take place from October 19 to 25. But with a difference: due to the spread of Covid-19 and the need to maintain social distancing, the events of the week, for the first time, will be virtual – with no prejudice to discussions or the participation of experts and professionals from other countries.
The virtual events model, spread around the world this year due to the pandemic, has already been incorporated into other international weeks of arbitration. For example, that was the case of the Paris Arbitration Week, held in July fully online; and of the Hong Kong Arbitration Week, to be held in October.
In these three years, the SPAW has already been ranked on the same level of similar international initiatives, providing a forum that brings together events that identify and discuss the main topics on ADRs in Brazil and worldwide.
Launched on October 19 by the VII CAM-CCBC Arbitration Congress, the week continues with events discussing the role of professionals involved in arbitration, the future of ADR, arbitration in mergers and acquisitions transactions, among other topics. In addition to the Congress, the GAR 2020 Award for Best Innovation will be held within SPAW, promoted by the Brazilian branch of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb); and the XI Brazilian Competition for Business Arbitration and Mediation, held by the Chamber of Business Mediation and Arbitration (Camarb). On October 22 and 23, the CAM-CCBC will promote two events, the first will be the 7th edition of the Luso-Brazilian Arbitration Journey, in collaboration with the Commercial Arbitration Center (CAC) of the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the second is the 3rd edition of M&A Arbitration, which will address price and interim period.
As previous initiatives by the Center and in line with its commitment to ensuring female representation, SPAW rules recommend that the events promoted during the week have the minimum participation of 30% of women in the events registered in the calendar. In addition, this year edition will also have a social character: to register events in the calendar, the organizers must make a symbolic donation to any social institution of free choice. At the end of SPAW all events will have the reports produced by the Center made available on the initiative website.
In recent years, the SPAW has been an important platform to discuss the universe of arbitration in the Brazilian market, engage the community of professionals who work in it, and encourage the exchange of experiences. Held decentralized and in several spaces, such as the offices of the entities, law firms, hotels and at the CAM-CCBC itself, the initiative has contributed to record the importance of alternative forms of dispute resolution, and especially arbitration, on the map of São Paulo.
In its first edition, held in October 2018, the week had 16 events, which discussed topics like arbitration in sectors such as agribusiness, ocean transport, in addition to dealing with its use in post-acquisition litigations, among other issues. And among the events included in its program were the III São Paulo FCI Pre-Moot, the V CAM-CCBC Pan American Arbitration Congress, the II International Congress of Business Mediation of the Private Business Mediation Study Group (Gemep), the V Luso-Brazilian Arbitration Journey, and the IX Brazilian Arbitration and Business Mediation Competition of Camarb.
The following edition, held in October 2019, represented a progress in scope, structure and participation. In total, 29 institutions (including chambers, offices, etc.) organized 26 events during the week – including a rock show and a non-competitive run. Only the events promoted by the CAM-CCBC received 900 registrations from participants from three continents. In general, the dimensions of this second SPAW, with a growth of 42% compared to the first edition, has put it on the same level of other similar initiatives held abroad.
Discussions on issues relevant to the arbitration community, such as cybersecurity, the role of arbitration in labor claims, expansion of transparency standards, female representation, and the Singapore Convention contributed to the success of SPAW 2019. On that occasion, the CAM-CCBC NewGeneration group was also launched, composed of young professionals working in the ADR market in Brazil.