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Thought Leaders

Thought Leaders

Elliott E Geisinger

Elliott E Geisinger

Schellenberg Wittmer Ltd15bis, rue des AlpesPO Box 2088GenevaSwitzerland1211
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Thought Leader

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

Questions & Answers

Elliott Geisinger heads Schellenberg Wittmer’s international arbitration group. Since 1994, his practice has focused on international arbitration. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in complex commercial disputes involving international construction contracts; consortia and joint venture agreements; sponsorship contracts; and sales and distribution contracts. Elliott has regularly represented clients in arbitration-related court proceedings, in particular, investment-related matters. Several of his cases have been reported on, in the official collection of Swiss Supreme Court cases and in arbitration journals. Elliott specialises in contract management in large-scale construction projects.

WHAT FIRST ATTRACTED YOU TO WORKING IN ARBITRATION?

The cross-cultural aspect at all levels: clients, counsel, arbitrators, even institutions.

WHAT DID YOU FIND MOST CHALLENGING ABOUT STARTING OUT IN ARBITRATION?

Dealing with the cross-cultural aspects. There are many pitfalls in terms of communication and it took me a long time to recognise them. I don’t know whether I actually succeed in avoiding them.

HOW HAS THE MARKET CHANGED SINCE YOU STARTED PRACTISING? 

The standardisation of case management techniques that are not always very helpful or cost- and time-efficient. On the bright side, there is increasing awareness of this and the truly high-quality people are reacting by using their imagination and brains instead of standards.

YOU HAVE BEEN INVOLVED IN A RANGE OF DISPUTES IN THE CONSTRUCTION SPACE. ON WHAT TYPES OF MATTERS DO YOU REPRESENT CLIENTS MOST FREQUENTLY AT PRESENT?

There are more and more mega-projects. I co-represent the contracting consortium in the Panama Canal arbitrations: the project and the arbitrations are huge. Also, there are more and more disputes on renewable energies.

WHAT DO CLIENTS LOOK FOR WHEN SELECTING A COUNSEL?

Someone who understands their business and “speaks their language”, but who also

has in-depth understanding of arbitration and is prepared to tell them things they don’t always want to hear.

TECHNOLOGIES SUCH AS VIDEOCONFERENCING AND CLOUD-BASED STORAGE ARE OFTEN CITED AS DEVELOPMENTS THAT WILL HAVE A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE SPACE. HOW IS YOUR FIRM STAYING AHEAD OF THE CURVE WITH TECHNOLOGY?

In my opinion, in today’s world of cyber-spying, these trends will not translate into major practice changes (especially cloud-based storage). Video-conferencing is not new and experience shows that it is far from replacing in-person examination.

WHERE, IN YOUR OPINION, DOES THE FUTURE OF ARBITRATION LIE?

Moving away from case management practices that lead to huge inefficiencies. For example, weeks of hearings for the examination and cross-examination of witnesses and experts is more often than not a huge waste of time money and energy. There are far more effective ways for an arbitral tribunal to get to the bottom of the facts. Tribunals must be, and are becoming, more proactive in this respect.

WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENT TO DATE?

Reading somewhere that one of my clients wrote that I think like an engineer…

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader
WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

Global Leader

Arbitration 2019

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

Elliott Geisinger is an "excellent lawyer" who is commended by market players as a "highly qualified and very balanced arbitrator".

Biography

Elliott Geisinger heads Schellenberg Wittmer’s international arbitration group. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 130 international arbitrations in complex commercial disputes involving international commercial contracts. He has also advised foreign states and Swiss corporations in investment disputes.

Elliott is particularly specialised in construction and engineering matters. He is co-founder of the Istanbul International Construction Law Conferences project, with Professor Dr Yesim Atamer of Istanbul Bilgi University (www.construction-law.bilgi.edu.tr). He is further specialised in contract management in large-scale construction and infrastructure projects.

Elliott regularly represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings. Elliott has represented parties before the Swiss Supreme Court in several landmark cases.

Elliott's recent experience in arbitration matters includes representation, as co-counsel, for the construction consortium in several ICC proceedings relating to the enlargement of the Panama Canal; representation of the Russian Federation in investment arbitration matters in proceedings before the Swiss Supreme Court to set aside interim awards on jurisdiction under the ECT and under the Ukraine-Russia BIT; and representation of a major North African state company in proceedings relating to saltwater desalination projects.

Elliott has been president of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) since 2014. Elliott is one of four arbitration experts to have advised the Swiss government on revisions to the Swiss law on international arbitration.

Construction 2019

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Thought Leader

WWL says

Elliott Geisinger achieves significant recognition as one of Switzerland's foremost arbitration specialists, with exceptional experience in the resolution of construction and engineering disputes.

Biography

Elliott Geisinger heads Schellenberg Wittmer’s international arbitration group. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 130 international arbitrations in complex commercial disputes involving international commercial contracts. He has also advised foreign states and Swiss corporations in investment disputes.

Elliott is particularly specialised in construction and engineering matters. He is co-founder of the Istanbul International Construction Law Conferences project, with Professor Dr Yesim Atamer of Istanbul Bilgi University (www.construction-law.bilgi.edu.tr). He is further specialised in contract management in large-scale construction and infrastructure projects.

Elliott regularly represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings. Elliott has represented parties before the Swiss Supreme Court in several landmark cases.

Elliott's recent experience in arbitration matters includes representation, as co-counsel, for the construction consortium in several ICC proceedings relating to the enlargement of the Panama Canal; representation of the Russian Federation in investment arbitration matters in proceedings before the Swiss Supreme Court to set aside interim awards on jurisdiction under the ECT and under the Ukraine-Russia BIT; and representation of a major North African state company in proceedings relating to saltwater desalination projects.

Elliott has been president of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) since 2014. Elliott is one of four arbitration experts to have advised the Swiss government on revisions to the Swiss law on international arbitration.

National Leader

Switzerland - Arbitration

Professional Biography

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Elliott Geisinger is “a highly qualified and very balanced arbitrator in the Swiss market”. He acts as both counsel and arbitrator in international commercial disputes regarding construction contracts and joint venture agreements and has 25 years’ experience in the area.

Biography

Elliott Geisinger heads Schellenberg Wittmer’s international arbitration group. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 130 international arbitrations in complex commercial disputes involving international commercial contracts. He has also advised foreign states and Swiss corporations in investment disputes.

Elliott is particularly specialised in construction and engineering matters. He is co-founder of the Istanbul International Construction Law Conferences project, with Professor Dr Yesim Atamer of Istanbul Bilgi University (www.construction-law.bilgi.edu.tr). He is further specialised in contract management in large-scale construction and infrastructure projects.

Elliott regularly represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings. Elliott has represented parties before the Swiss Supreme Court in several landmark cases.

Elliott's recent experience in arbitration matters includes representation, as co-counsel, for the construction consortium in several ICC proceedings relating to the enlargement of the Panama Canal; representation of the Russian Federation in investment arbitration matters in proceedings before the Swiss Supreme Court to set aside interim awards on jurisdiction under the ECT and under the Ukraine-Russia BIT; and representation of a major North African state company in proceedings relating to saltwater desalination projects.

Elliott has been president of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) since 2014. Elliott is one of four arbitration experts to have advised the Swiss government on revisions to the Swiss law on international arbitration.

WWL Ranking: Recommended

WWL says

Elliott Geisinger is "a very active player" in the Swiss real estate and construction sector recognised for his excellent work on construction and engineering disputes.

Biography

Elliott Geisinger heads Schellenberg Wittmer’s international arbitration group. He has acted as counsel and arbitrator in over 130 international arbitrations in complex commercial disputes involving international commercial contracts. He has also advised foreign states and Swiss corporations in investment disputes.

Elliott is particularly specialised in construction and engineering matters. He is co-founder of the Istanbul International Construction Law Conferences project, with Professor Dr Yesim Atamer of Istanbul Bilgi University (www.construction-law.bilgi.edu.tr). He is further specialised in contract management in large-scale construction and infrastructure projects.

Elliott regularly represents clients in arbitration-related court proceedings. Elliott has represented parties before the Swiss Supreme Court in several landmark cases.

Elliott's recent experience in arbitration matters includes representation, as co-counsel, for the construction consortium in several ICC proceedings relating to the enlargement of the Panama Canal; representation of the Russian Federation in investment arbitration matters in proceedings before the Swiss Supreme Court to set aside interim awards on jurisdiction under the ECT and under the Ukraine-Russia BIT; and representation of a major North African state company in proceedings relating to saltwater desalination projects.

Elliott has been president of the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) since 2014. Elliott is one of four arbitration experts to have advised the Swiss government on revisions to the Swiss law on international arbitration.

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