International mooting contest win for CityU

School of Law

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A mooting team from City University of Hong Kong (CityU) beat last year’s winner Murdoch University to win the International Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Mooting Competition on 13 August after six days’ intense competition.

Fourteen teams participated in the 2nd ADR mooting competition. They came from renowned law schools from the mainland, Australia, Europe, South Korea and the US. Columbia Law School, New York Law School and China University of Political Science and Law were represented.

“The competition is extraordinarily challenging as it combines mediation and arbitration sessions, requiring extensive knowledge and adept skills in both areas,” said Ms Yang Fan, Assistant Professor at CityU’s School of Law (SLW) and the team coach.

“The competition, which has attracted participants from America, Australia, Europe and Southeast Asia, has made a statement to the world that Hong Kong is becoming a hub for legal education and professional exchanges in the Asia-Pacific region,” she added.

CityU team members Karen Ngai Wing-nga, Theresa Gao Shang from the Bachelor of Laws with Honours (LLB) programme and Jessica Chow Yat-sau from the Juris Doctor (JD) programme displayed strong arbitration and mediation skills, triumphing despite having one of the toughest routes through the competition.

“The most difficult part for me was to act as a businessman [the client] in the mediation session because I needed to have knowledge of commercial practices and life experiences far beyond my age,” Karen said. “But I overcame the difficulties and learned to think through the process.”

Theresa Gao said: “I polished my debating skills during the competition, especially through our debates with my coach about the case. The days and nights in my coach’s office helped clarify the case for us and build our confidence when facing challenges from the judges.” She added that two key words summed up her experience: teamwork and friendship.

Honoured guests at the opening ceremony on 7 August included Professor Tang Houzhi, Honorary Vice Chairman and Senior Advisor, the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC); Mr Yu Jianlong, Vice Chairman and Secretary-General, CIETAC; Mr Kumar Ramanathan, SC, President, Hong Kong Bar Association; Mr Dieter Yih, Vice President, The Law Society of Hong Kong; Mr Vincent DeLuca, Senior Director of International and Comparative Law Programs, Columbia Law School; Professor Wang Guiguo, Dean, SLW, CityU; Dr Vernon Nase, Director of International ADR Mooting Competition; and Mr Rajesh Sharma, Director of Mooting and Assistant Professor, SLW.

The competition is an innovative initiative of three institutions: the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), SLW, and the School of Law of Columbia University. It is the first mooting competition in the world to combine mediation and arbitration. By organising this international competition, SLW is offering law students the opportunity to enhance and sharpen their professional skills.

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