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Robert Davidson

Robert B. Davidson, Esq., FCIArb

Case Manager
Virginia Corvey
T: 212-607-2754
F: 212-751-4099
620 Eighth Avenue, 34th Floor, New York, NY 10018


Mr. Davidson is a retired senior litigation partner of a major international law firm and the Executive Director of JAMS Arbitration Practice. He is widely recognized as one of the world's leading international arbitrators.

Mr. Davidson has acted as sole arbitrator, chairman or member of a tripartite panel in numerous international arbitrations conducted under the rules of various institutions including the Rules of the ICC, the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules, the Rules of the Netherlands Arbitration Institute, the LCIA, the CPR non-administered rules, the ICDR (AAA) International Rules, the CIETAC Arbitration Rules and the Domestic Arbitration Rules of the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre. Prior to his retirement from practice, he also acted as counsel to parties appearing before various arbitral institutions, including acting as lead counsel in eleven cases before the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal, cases before the International Chamber of Commerce, the Netherlands Arbitration Institute, the U.N. Claims Commission and ad hoc panels. In addition, he represented clients in over 100 arbitrations administered by the American Arbitration Association and the ICDR.

Representative Mediations

  • Mediated securities class action brought by Singaporean investors against U.S. investment bank
  • Mediated dispute between non-U.S. lessor/owner of aircraft and defaulting lessee, including claim by lessee of defective engines
  • Mediated product liability dispute between insurer and minor plaintiffs injured by the ingestion of magnets contained in toys made in China
  • Mediated dispute between buyer and seller of construction business over indemnification for customer claim involving alleged defects in subway cars used in the London Underground
  • Mediated dispute between cruise ship operator and French/English suppliers of steering mechanisms
  • Mediated distributorship termination dispute between U.S. manufacturer and Indonesian distributor
  • Mediated dispute involving U.S. and non-U.S. producers of petroleum products sold worldwide (mediation resolved three L.C.I.A. arbitrations then pending)
  • Dispute between investment bank and former oversees employee over correct computation of tax equalization under employment contract
  • Mediated various disputes between investment bankers employed in overseas offices and U.S. or non-U.S. employers
  • Mediated trademark dispute between U.S. and Korean companies involving alleged dilution under state law and Lanham Act claims
  • Mediated dispute among foreign investors in adr's issued by non-U.S. company (private placement of shares of publicly traded company)
  • Mediated dispute between a U.S. software licensor and European licensee
  • Mediated break-up dispute between partners of hedge fund headquartered in Japan and specializing in the trading of Japanese equity securities

Representative Arbitrations

  • Dispute over post-closing adjustments and other claims arising out of the sale of an oil company in South America to state-owned entities of Korea and Colombia (ICDR, New York venue)
  • Dispute between Chinese and American manufacturers of aircraft parts and components (ICC, Washington D.C. venue)
  • Dispute over alleged breach of a pharmaceutical license agreement between a Korean licensor and U.S. based licensee
  • Dispute involving U.S. licensor of drug used in connection with cardiac surgery against licensee for abandonment of Phase III trial (ICDR, New York venue)
  • German machinery supplier of engines vs. Latin American buyer for default under supply agreement (ICC, Miami venue)
  • European pharmaceutical company licensor v. U.S. licensee for damages allegedly caused by failure to use "good clinical practices" and obtain regulatory approvals (NAI Rules, Hague venue)
  • U.S. pharmaceutical licensor vs. Japanese licensee for alleged failure to commence Phase III trials in Japan (ICDR, New York venue)
  • Asian insurer v. Manufacturer (action by subrogee of computer equipment manufacturer against component supplier for loss suffered in U.S. litigation; HKIAC Rules and Hong Kong venue)
  • Chinese tire manufacturer v. U.S. tire distributor (action to enforce jurisdictional and CIETAC arbitration provisions of sales agreement in defense of U.S. product liability litigation; CIETAC Rules, Beijing venue)
  • Singaporean acid supplier vs. Singaporean user for alleged breach of requirements contract (ICC, New York venue)
  • Charter dispute between owner and vessel charterer
  • Aircraft lessee v. Non-U.S. jet engine repair facility (dispute over return of engine)
  • Non-U.S. credit card franchisees v. Successor to franchisor (dispute over diminution in value of franchise due to changes to the business imposed by successor to franchisor) (ICC Rules, London venue)
  • European airline v. Software services provider (dispute over agreement to provide certain reservations functionality) (ICC Rules, London venue)
  • Asian investment fund v. Entrepreneur (dispute over repayment of monies advanced) (HKIAC Rules, Hong Kong venue) 
  • Non-U.S. airline v. Software developer (dispute over functionality of airline reservations system)
  • European resort operator v. Landlord (dispute over long term lease of resort property in Thailand) (ICC Rules, Geneva venue)
  • Acquirer of international business v. Seller (proper allocation of tax liabilities among three parties created by two spin-off transactions)
  • Acquirer of international business v. Seller (determination of tax allocations in accordance with terms of acquisition agreement)
  • Buyer of international construction business v. Seller (quantification of post closing adjustments due in connection with sale of business)
  • East Asian buyer v. U.S. seller (action by buyer of chemicals for losses incurred arising out of seller's chartering of allegedly unseaworthy vessel)
  • Equity investor v. Investment partners (dispute over alleged failure to capitalize Argentine business)
  • Major university v. Investors (dispute arising out of technology funding agreement)
  • Oil Exploration Company v. Oil Exploration Company (action for reversal of dilution of share interest in joint venture)
  • Oil trading company v. Agent for sovereign buyer (breach of contract for sale of fuel oil)
  • Philadelphia importer v. Chilean grower (dispute involving alleged breach of contract for the sale of Chilean grapes)
  • Private equity fund v. Placement agent (alleged breach of engagement letter between fund and capital placement agent)
  • Purchaser of chemical business v. Seller (action for fraud and rescission due to seller's alleged presale participation in illegal scheme to inflate price of manufactured product)
  • Shoe seller v. Asian sales agent (alleged breach of contract to arrange for manufacture of shoes)
  • Offshore excess insurer v. Insured (coverage dispute under property casualty excess policy)
  • Buyer of healthcare business v. Seller (dispute over post closing purchase price adjustment)
  • Inventor of medical device v. Major U.S. pharmaceutical company (dispute over licensee’s alleged failure to exploit invention)
  • Patent holder v. Alleged infringer (dispute over enforceability of mediated settlement calling for joint efforts to develop product)
  • Investor v. Asian insurance company (dispute over investor’s right to sell shares and valuation of investor’s interest)
  • Investment advisor v. Asian company (dispute over fees allegedly owed for merger advice and financing services rendered)
  • U.S. company v. U.K. joint venture partner (dispute over performance of joint venture agreements relating to marine container business)
  • U.S. insurer v. U.K. insured (action to interpret political risk insurance policy)
  • Executive v. Non-US company (dispute over compensation including right to acquire stock)
  • Chaired the final argument at the Vis Moot Court Competition in Vienna in 2008

Supplementary Matters

  • Mr. Davidson has acted as chief trial counsel in the following international arbitrations:

    Arbitrations at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal ("The IUSCT"):
    • Sedco, Inc., etc. v. National Iranian Oil Co., et al.; Award No. ITL 55-129-3 (28 October 1985); Award No. ITL 59-129-3 (27 March 1986); and Award No. 309-129-3 (7 July 1987) (award of over $116 million, the largest award as of that date from the Tribunal, in compensation for breach of drilling contracts and expropriation of assets)
    • Sedco, Inc., et al. v. Iran Marine Industrial Co., et al.; Award No. 419-128/129-2 (30 March 1989) (Award of over $28 million in compensation for expropriation of shipyard)
    • Houston Contracting Company v. National Iranian Oil Co.; Award No. 378-173-3 (22 July 1988) (Award of over $22 million for breach of pipeline construction contracts and expropriation of assets)
    • Reading & Bates Corporation, et al. v. National Iranian Oil Co.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 95-28-1 (19 December 1983) (expropriation of offshore drilling rig and breach of drilling contract)
    • Reading & Bates Exploration Co. and Irano Reading & Bates S.S.K. v. National Iranian Oil Co.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 513-29-1 (21 June 1991)
    • Geo. J. Meyer Manufacturing Division of Figgie Int’l, Inc. v. Zam Zam Bottling Co.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 178-299-1 (23 May 1985) (payment for dishonored drafts accepted by expropriated Iranian company)
    • Tidewater, Inc. and Tidewater Marine Services, Inc., et al. v. National Iranian Oil Co., et al.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 188-176-2 (6 September 1985) (same)
    • Tidewater, Inc., et al. v. National Iranian Oil Co., et al.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 199-175-2 (14 November 1985)
    • Procon International, Inc. v. The Islamic Republic of Iran, National Iranian Oil Company, et al.; Award on Agreed Terms, Award No. 130-436-1 (6 June 1984) (breach of services contract)
    • H.A. Spalding & Co. v. Ministry of Transportation and Roads of the Islamic Republic of Iran; Award No. 212-437-3 (24 February 1986) (advisory counsel; breach of construction contract)
    • Arthur Young & Co. v. Islamic Republic of Iran, et al., IUSCT Claim No. 484, Chamber l (advisory counsel; breach of contract for services)
    International arbitrations before other tribunals:
    • Canadian wheat seller v. Italian pasta manufacturer, breach of contract for the sale of wheat-NAEGA Rules
    • Editoriale Giorgio Mondadori, S.p.A. v. Conde Nast Publications, Inc., action by licensee for wrongful termination of license to publish Italian edition of Architectural Digest magazine
    • European distributors of “stents” and related medical products v. U.S. manufacturer, action by European distributor and subsidiary distributors against U.S. manufacturer for breach of distribution agreements related to medical products
    • London-based bank v. U.S. insurance company, 36 separate arbitrations involving claims disputes and interpretive issues arising out of two credit risk insurance policies that insured the repayment of loans to African sovereign borrowers
    • Major U.S. defense contractor v. Kuwaiti sales agent, termination of Kuwaiti sales representative and counterclaim for commissions allegedly due (ICC)
    • Major U.S. offshore drilling contractor v. Iranian state-owned oil company, appropriation or conversion of assets located offshore Iran (ICC)
    • Major U.S. onshore drilling contractor v. Algerian state-owned oil company, breach of joint venture agreement; valuation of seized drilling equipment located in Algeria (ICC)
    • Seller of Polish fixed line telephone business v. Defaulting Buyer, action for breach of contract to purchase business (ICC)
    • Seller of Industrial Business v. Defaulting buyer, action for failure to purchase business; counterclaim for fraud (Netherlands Arbitration Institute)
    • Offshore reinsurer v. U.S. reinsured, reinsurance commutation dispute
    • Richard Blumberg, as receiver for Accurate Calculator Corp. v. T.E.A.L., breach of contract for sale of goods
    • Shareholder v. Co-owners of family business, action by dissident shareholder of closely held corporation to exercise certain option rights in Canadian company
    • Sperry International Trade v. Ministry of War of the Government of Israel, construction contract; special counsel relating to obtaining of provisional remedy in aid of arbitration. See Sperry Intl Trade v. Government of Israel, 689 F.2d 302 (2d Cir. 1982) (ICC)
    • U.S. coal company v. Japanese steel company, alleged breach of long term supply contract for the purchase and sale of coal (ICC)
    • U.S. reinsured v. Offshore reinsurer, reinsurance coverage dispute
    • U.S. vegetable oil trading company v. Japanese-based seller, breach of contract for the sale of Tung Oil -Tung Oil Association Rules
    • Uganda Coffee Marketing Board v. Companie Agricole, etc., breach of contract for the sale of coffee-Green Coffee Association Rules
  • Silicon Valley Arbitration and Mediation Center, on the 2018 and 2019 Lists of the World’s Leading Technology Neutrals
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2018 and 2019; New York City Arbitration "Lawyer of the Year"
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, in the practice areas of Arbitration and International Arbitration - Commercial, 2016-2019
  • Listed as one of the Leading International Arbitrators in the Chambers USA Guides (Tier 1), 2010-2019
  • Listed under International Arbitration in Chambers USA America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Listed in Who's Who Legal, in the practice area of Mediation, 2016-2019
  • Presented with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award by Marquis Who’s Who
  • Fellow, Chartered Institute of Arbitrators
  • Listed as a New York Super Lawyer for alternative dispute resolution since 2006
  • Listed as one of the world's leading commercial arbitrators in Who's Who Legal: Arbitration
  • Listed in the Commercial Arbitration Expert Guide 
  • Advisory Board, Institute for Transnational Arbitration
  • Listed in various Marquis Who’s Who publications, including: Who’s Who in the World, in America, and in American Law, Cambridge Who's Who; "AV Preeminent" rating from Martindale Hubbell
  • Past Chair, Committee on Arbitration, New York City Bar Association; Member, In-House/Outside Litigation Counsel Committee; member of NYCBA Committee on International Commercial Disputes
  • Fellow and Past Board Member, College of Commercial Arbitrators
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Member, International Arbitration Club of New York 
  • Member, Maritime Law Association of the United States (since 1979)
  • Member, IBA 
  • Member, American Bar Association and its Sections on Dispute Resolution and International Law
  • Member, New York State Bar Association and its Committee on International Commercial Arbitration
  • Panel Memberships: JAMS panel; HKIAC (Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre) arbitrator and mediator panels; CPR New York, and Cross-Border Panels; ICC arbitrator panel; CIETAC (China) Arbitrator Panel; Beijing Arbitration Commission (BAC) panel of arbitrators; Netherlands Arbitration Institute panel; panel of mediators for the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York; panel of arbitrators, Kuala Lumpur Regional Centre for Arbitration 
  • Regularly sit as arbitrator in AAA, ICDR, ICC, JAMS, CPR, ad hoc, LCIA, HKIAC (Hong Kong), CIETAC and NAI (Netherlands Arbitration Institute) arbitrations
  • Chair, final argument, Vis Moot Court competition, Vienna (2008)
  • Member, ICC Task Force on Reducing Time and Cost in International Arbitration
  • Member, CEDR Task Force on Settlement in International Arbitration
  • Published articles have appeared in legal publications throughout the country including, among others, the New York Law Journal, The National Law Journal, Middle East Executive Reports, Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, World Arbitration and Mediation Report, The American Review of International Arbitration, and Mealey's International Arbitration Report 
  • Contributing author to The Leading Arbitrators' Guide to International Arbitration, 3d ed. (Juris Pub. 2014); all four editions of the College of Commercial Arbitrators’ Guide to Best Practices in Commercial Arbitration, (Juris Pub.); two editions of the Practitioner’s Handbook on International Arbitration and Mediation, 2d and 3d Eds. (Juris Pub. 2007 and 2012) (Chapters on International Mediation); and two editions of International Arbitration Checklists, (Juris Pub. 2003 and 2009)
  • Frequent lecturer to bar associations and CLE programs on arbitration topics. Guest lecturer on international and other legal topics at University of Georgia Law School, Fordham Law School, Columbia Law School, Yale Law School, Brooklyn Law School, Cardozo School of Law, New York Law School, and Pace Law School
  • Retired Partner, Baker & McKenzie, (Partner 1979-2003; Associate 1972-1979), former co-head of the litigation department in New York
  • Significant experience in commercial contract and shareholder disputes, including post-closing adjustment disputes, valuation exercises, and the like; regularly act in securities, insurance, licensing, joint venture, construction, and IP arbitrations and mediations 
  • Admitted to the Bar of the State of New York in January of 1973; although practicing ADR full time, still a member of the Bars of the United States District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, the United States Tax Court, and various of the United States Courts of Appeal
  • Former Director of The Wall Street Fund (a mutual fund)
  • Peace Corps Volunteer (Philippines), 1968-1970
  • J.D., Columbia School of Law, 1972 (Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar)
  • B.S., in Economics, cum laude, The Wharton School of Finance and Commerce, University of Pennsylvania

  • English

  • IP (patents, trademarks, pharmaceutical and other licensing disputes)
  • Corporate transactions (disputes under SPA and APA agreements; M&A disputes)
  • Contracts (construction, sales of goods, distributorship agreements)
  • Insurance and reinsurance disputes
  • Finance and investment (hedge fund disputes; investment issues involving CDOs or CLOs, swaps, etc.)
  • Bankruptcy claims
  • Employment disputes




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