Georgia Law Dean Rutledge and student Rudzinskyi comment on appeals decision affecting international arbitration

A decision in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit overturned its precedent regarding international arbitration awards, and thus ruled in line with other federal appellate courts, is the subject of a new commentary by  Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge (above left) and student Vladyslav Rudzinskyi, a member of the Master of Laws (LL.M.) Class of 2023.

Their article, entitled “Eleventh Circuit Switches Stance on Grounds for the Vacatur of Non-Domestic Awards,” appeared on May 11 in the Daily Report.

The article discusses Corporacion AIC, SA v. Hidroelectrica Santa Rita S.A., an en banc April 13, 2023, decision in which the Eleventh Circuit set aside panel precedents to hold that vacatur proceedings related to non-domestic awards are governed by chapter 1 the Federal Arbitration Act. Noting that the new decision corresponds with others in the Second, Third, Sixth, and Tenth Circuits, Rutledge and Rudzinskyi concluded noted:

“Previously, arbitration practitioners in the Eleventh Circuit (especially hubs like Atlanta and Miami) could tout its distinctive vacatur standards as a reason to site disputes there.

“Those standards had aligned the Eleventh Circuit with international jurisdictions following the UNCITRAL Model Arbitration Law (whose vacatur standards track those under the New York Convention). Corporacion strips the Eleventh Circuit of that potential comparative advantage as an arbitral forum.”

They further warned that “[t]he new standard risks diluting the enforceability of international awards.”

International law at University of Georgia, administered by Dean Rusk International Law Center, earns #15 U.S. News ranking

Delighted to report that the just-released U.S. News rankings place our international law curriculum here at the University of Georgia School of Law at No. 15 in the United States.

This excellence rating caps a decade in which our international law initiatives have ranked in the top 20 or so among US law schools. In this year’s rankings, our international law curriculum tied with UCLA Law for the No. 15 spot. (The University of Georgia School of Law, as a whole, earned a No. 20 ranking this year, as it posted here.)

Our international law achievement is due in no small part to the enthusiastic support and hard work of everyone affiliated with Georgia Law’s four-decades-old-old Dean Rusk International Law Center. As chronicled at this Exchange of Notes blog and our Center website, these include:

► Superb members of the law faculty, including: Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, an international arbitration expert; our Center’s Director, Melissa J. “MJ” Durkee, whose expertise includes international business law, international environmental law, and space law; the Center’s Faculty Co-Directors, Professors Diane Marie Amann, an expert in peace-and-security fields including the laws of war, child rights, and international criminal justice, and Harlan G. Cohen, an expert in global governance, trade, and foreign relations law. Among those supporting their efforts are many other Georgia Law faculty and courtesy faculty members, including: Professors Zohra Ahmed, whose interests include law and political economy; Christopher M. Bruner, a comparative corporate governance scholar; Thomas Burch, who leads the Appellate Clinic that has won clients relief under the Convention Against Torture; Anne Burnett, foreign and international law research librarian; Jason Cade and Clare Norins, who recently led a clinical team in securing federal redress for immigration detainees; Nathan S. Chapman, a scholar of due process and extraterritoriality; Jessica L. Heywood, Director of the Washington, D.C. Semester in Practice; Thomas E. Kadri, whose expertise includes cybercrime and global data privacy; Fazal Khan and Elizabeth Weeks, health law specialists; Jonathan Peters, a journalism and law professor expert in international media and free speech; Laura Phillips-Sawyer; Kalyani Ramnath, a global legal historian who focuses on South Asia; Lori A. Ringhand, a scholar of comparative constitutional law and elections law; Tim Samples, whose scholarship includes global digital platforms agreements; Kent BarnettSonja West, and Elizabeth Chamblee Burch, who have presented overseas on administrative law, media law, and civil procedure, respectively; Walter Hellerstein, a world-renowned tax specialist; Michael L. Wells, a European Union scholar; and Anna Howard White, who led our champion Jessup International Moot Court Team.

► Talented students pursuing JDMSL, and LLM degrees, as well as Graduate Certificates in International Law. They include: our Center’s many Student Ambassadors; the staffers and editors of the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law who produce one of the country’s oldest student journals, and who led our October 2022 conference, “The Law of Global Economic Statecraft”; the advocates on the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court, the LL.M.s’ International Commercial & Investment Arbitration Moot Competition, and the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot; student clinicians in our Appellate Litigation Clinic who have argued asylum cases before U.S. Courts of Appeals, as well as those in our Community HeLP Clinic, Jane W. Wilson Family Justice Clinic, and First Amendment Clinic who have litigated claims for detainees and other immigration clients; participants in our Global Externships as well as our full-semester NATO Externship and other D.C. Semester in Practice placements; and the student leaders of our International Law Society.

► Superb Center staff like Laura Tate KagelSarah QuinnMandy Dixon, and Catrina Martin.

► Visiting Scholars and Researchers, including, most recently, Professor Brianne McGonigle Leyh and Maisie Hopkins from the Netherlands’ Utrecht University, Daesun Kim, a comparative administrative law researcher; and Professor Natalia Pires de Vasconcelos, Insper São Paulo, Brazil.

► Academics, practitioners, and policymakers, from all over the world, who have contributed to our events – conferences, workshops, and lectures, including our ongoing Consular Series and International Law Colloquium, as well as this past semester’s Space Law Speaker Series, part of a minicourse that culminated in a daylong problem-solving exercise.

► Graduates who excel as partners in international commercial law firms, as heads of nongovernmental organizations and international organizations, as in-house counsel at leading multinational enterprises, and as diplomats and public servants – and who give back through participation in our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council, through mentoring, and through other support.

► Our valued partnerships, with Georgia Law student organizations; with leading higher education institutions such as the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies in Belgium, our partner in our Global Governance Summer School,  as well as O.P. Jindal University in India and Bar Ilan University in Israel, with which we have student and faculty exchanges; with organizations like the American Branch of the International Law Association, the American Society of International Law, and the European Society of International Law, in which our faculty have held leadership roles, as well as Global Atlanta, the World Affairs Council of Atlanta, the Atlanta International Arbitration Society; and with university units like the School of Public & International Affairs, the Terry College of Business, the Grady School of Journalism, the African Studies Institute, and the Willson Center for Humanities & Arts.

With thanks to all, we look forward to continue strengthening our initiatives in international, comparative, transnational, and foreign relations law – not least, in the preparation of Georgia Law students to practice in our 21st C. globalized legal profession.

Georgia Law Dean Bo Rutledge and student Alexandra Lampe publish commentary on federal appellate ruling involving state secrets privilege

The implications of a recent federal appellate ruling related to international civil litigation is the subject of a commentary published last week by the dean and a student researcher here at the University of Georgia School of Law.

Coauthoring the Daily Report article, entitled “State Secrets Privilege: A Challenge in International Litigation,” were international business law expert Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, Dean and Herman E. Talmadge Chair of Law at Georgia  Law, along with Alexandra Lampe, a member of Georgia Law’s Master of Laws (LL.M.) Class of 2023.

The article discusses Sakab Saudi Holding Co. v. Aljabri, 58 F.4th 585 (1st Cir. 2023), in which the Boston-based U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed a dismissal of a suit arising out of an asset seizure, lest further litigation risk disclosure of state secrets. After describing the ruling in the context of other case law, Rutledge and Lampe concluded:

“Parties in international commercial disputes with any kind of national security implication approaching U.S. courts, thus, should be aware to not expect too much from such proceedings. … [T]he broad application and interpretation of the state secrets privilege in the U.S. can complicate the resolution of international disputes.”

Bon voyage to students taking part in Georgia Law global summer initiatives

In the weeks ahead, more than two dozen students will travel to participate in two global practice preparation offerings administered by the University of Georgia School of Law Dean Rusk International Law Center. These are the:


This year’s Global Governance Summer School will focus on economic and human rights. It’s set to begin at the end this month, when students will travel to Belgium for a week of lectures led by Georgia Law Professor Zohra Ahmed as well as Leuven professors. The first week of this for-credit course also will include professional development briefings at the European Parliament, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and a private law firm.

Then programming shifts to The Hague, Netherlands, where Professor Melissa J. “MJ” Durkee, the Center’s Director, Associate Dean for International Programs, and Allen Post Professor at Georgia Law, will lead briefings at the International Criminal Court, the International Court of Justice, the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, and Leiden University. Casey Graham, Sarah Quinn, and Catrina Martin will provide logistical assistance during the program. (Above, many in the group gather for a predeparture photo.)

Seventeen Georgia Law students will take part: Andrew Arrington, Hao Chen “Bobby” Dong, and Marly “Jansen” Killian, Allison Reid, all rising 3Ls; Mona Abboud, Madison Graham, Megan Jones, Anna “Carolina” Mares, Erin Nalley, Caden Pruitt, Hannah Silvers, Tiffany Torchia, Daniel “Tripp” Vaughn, all rising 2Ls; and Alma Bajramovic, Thomas Kingsley, Angela Mossgrove, Jasmine Underwood, all pursuing Graduate Certificates in International Law.


Our Center’s Global Externship Overseas initiative places Georgia Law students in externships lasting between four and twelve weeks. It thus offers students the opportunity to gain practical work experience in a variety of legal settings worldwide. Some students opt to combine the GEO opportunity with participation in GGSS.

This summer, fifteen Georgia Law students are set to pursue Global Externships Overseas, in practice areas such as privacy and technology law, international environmental law, intellectual property law, European Union competition and trade law, international arbitration, corporate law, and human rights law.

Private-sector placements among rising 3Ls include: Caroline Bailey, GreenCo S.A., Buenos Aires, Argentina; Hao Chen “Bobby” Dong, Baker Tilly, Hamburg and Frankfurt, Germany; Matthew Philips, PSA Legal, New Delhi, India; Benjamin Siegel, Soreinen, Tallinn, Estonia. Among rising 2Ls, private-sector placements include: Mona Abboud, Alston & Bird, Brussels, Belgium; Madison Graham, Van Bael & Bellis, Brussels, Belgium; Sierra Hamilton, Weickmann & Weickmann, Munich, Germany; Anna “Carolina” Mares, Houerbi Law Firm, Tunis, Tunisia; Matthew McKaig, GÖRG, Berlin, Germany; Caden Pruitt, Bodenheimer, Cologne, Germany; Daniel “Tripp” Vaughn, Deloitte, Baku, Azerbaijan.

Public-sector placements include: rising 3L Allison Reid, Eliberare, Brasov, Romania; and rising 2Ls Jasmine Furin, Office of the Privacy Commissioner, Hamilton, Bermuda; Bryonna Howard, No Peace Without Justice, Brussels, Belgium; and Erin Nalley, New Zealand Department of Conservation, Wellington, New Zealand.

More information on both of these Georgia Law initiatives here.

Georgia Law’s first international law professor, Sigmund A. Cohn, featured in Dean Rusk International Law Center exhibit

An ongoing exhibit here at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law, celebrates the distinguished life and career of Professor Sigmund A. Cohn, who taught the law school’s first international law class, in 1940.

Cohn’s courses, in international law and in comparative law, blazed a trail. Others would follow Cohn’s path; among them, past Georgia Law Professors Dean Rusk, Louis B. Sohn, and Gabriel Wilner.

The exhibit was researched and curated by two of the Center’s Student Ambassadors, 3L Isabel White and 2L Carolina Mares, along with Rachel Evans, Metadata Services & Special Collections Librarian at the law school’s Alexander Campbell King Law Library. It features a collection of archival items about Cohn’s life and work.

Cohn was born in 1898 in Breslau, Germany (now Wrocław, Poland) to a Jewish family. He became a lawyer and then a judge in Germany’s Weimar Republic. But in 1934, Nazi Germany’s antisemitic laws forced him out of his judicial position. Cohn immigrated to Italy for a few years, but then was forced to immigrate once again, to the United States.

He was hired by Georgia Law, and became its first professor of Jewish ancestry, at a time when state laws barred the paying of foreign citizens. His hiring thus was supported financially by Harold Hirsch – then general counsel at the Coca-Cola Co., and the lawyer for whom Georgia Law’s Hirsch Hall is named.

A portrait of Professor Cohn greets visitors to the Dean Rusk International Law Center.

Cohn’s legacy likewise continues in the form of Georgia Law’s highly ranked curriculum (here and here), in global practice preparation and international professional education, benefiting candidates for Juris Doctor, Master of Laws (LL.M.), and Master in the Study of Law (M.S.L.) degrees as well as Graduate Certificate in International Law students.

Georgia Law students compete in Vis arbitration moot in Vienna, Austria

Top row, Benjamin Price; front row, l to r, Emily Crowell, Hanna Esserman, Yekaterina Ko, Sandon Fernandes, Savannah Grant

A team of students recently represented the University of Georgia School of Law at the annual Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot in Vienna, Austria. 

This year’s team comprised 2Ls Hanna Esserman, Sandon Fernandes, Benjamin Price, and Yekaterina Ko. Among those who supported their efforts were numerous coaches: 3Ls Emily Crowell and Savannah Grant, with support from 3Ls Collin Douglas and Ligon Fant, and Georgia Law Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge.  

Fernandes reflected on his Vis experience, which included not only the team’s competition in Vienna but also its third-place finish in the Florida Bar International Law Section Richard DeWitt Memorial Vis Pre-Moot in Miami this past February: 

“The Vis Moot Court competition provides students with the opportunity to collaborate on a challenging international commercial dispute as if it were a real case. Competing against 378 teams from around the world has given me the ability to analyze complex legal issues from a global perspective.”

Georgia Law professors, alumna, students take part in annual meeting of American Society of International Law

Many members of the University of Georgia School of Law community – professors, alumna, and students – took part in last week’s 117th Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, the theme of which was “The Reach and Limits of International Law to Solve Today’s Challenges.”

The annual meeting took place Wednesday-Saturday at several venues in Washington, D.C.

Representatives of Georgia Law, an ASIL Academic Partner, included three scholars affiliated with the law school’s Dean Rusk International Law Center:

The Center’s Director, Melissa J. “MJ” Durkee, who is also Associate Dean for International Programs and Allen Post Professor, moderated a panel entitled “How Does International Law Change? Theories and Concepts of Legal Change.” (photo top row left) It was sponsored by ASIL’s International Legal Theory Interest Group, for which Durkee serves as Chair. Panelists were: Benedict Kingsbury, New York University; Nico Krisch, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva; and Sivan Shlomo Agon, Bar-Ilan University.

Durkee additionally serves on the ASIL Executive Council and the Board of Editors of the American Journal of International Law, and took part in the meetings of both those groups.

Diane Marie Amann, Regents’ Professor of International Law, Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law, and one of our Center’s Faculty Co-Directors (above second from left), took part in a late-breaking panel, “ICC Arrest Warrant Against Putin: Impunity in Check?” (photo above left) Amann, an international child law expert and former Special Adviser to the International Criminal Court Prosecutor on Children in & affected by Armed Conflict, spoke on the significance of the fact that crimes against children form the basis of the international arrest warrant issued March 17 against the President and the Children’s Rights Commissioner of Russia. Additional panel participants were: Javier Eskauriatza, University of Nottingham; Marko Milanovic, University of Reading; Saira Mohamed, University of California-Berkeley; and moderator Katherine Gallagher, Center for Constitutional Rights. Panel video here.

Amann also attended the ASIL Executive Council meeting, completing her term as an ASIL Counsellor.

Harlan G. Cohen, Gabriel M. Wilner/UGA Foundation Professor in International Law and Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center, took the ASIL General Assembly stage: in his capacity as Chair of the 2023 Book Awards Committee, he co-presented those honors to numerous authors. (photo top row right, from left to right: ASIL President Greg Shaffer, honoree Damilola Olawuyi, ASIL Executive Director Michael Cooper, and Cohen; video 27:09)

Like Durkee, Cohen is a member of the AJIL Board of Editors and took part in the journal’s meeting. The annual meeting completed his service as Chair of ASIL’s International Legal Theory Interest Group.

A distinguished Georgia Law graduate also was featured:

Tess Davis (JD 2009), who is the Executive Director of the D.C.-based Antiquities Coalition and Dean Rusk International Law Center Council member, served as moderator for a session at the Smithsonian National Museum of Asian Art. (photo above right) Entitled “Protecting Cultural Heritage in Conflict Zones: Multi-Disciplinary Approaches,” the discussion also included: Patty Gerstenblith, DePaul University; Brooke Cuven, Cerberus Capital Management; Richard Kurin, Smithsonian Institution; and Zaydoon Zaid, American Foundation for Cultural Research.

Rounding out the contingent were four Georgia Law students, who received Louis B. Sohn Professional Development grants to serve as volunteers at the meeting: 2L Hao Chen “Bobby” Dong, 3L Collin Douglas, LLM candidate Alexandra Lampe, and 1L Mahi Patel.

Georgia Law LL.M. students win top honors at 10th International Commercial and Investment Arbitration Moot

Members of the University of Georgia School of Law LL.M. Class of 2023 won top honors at last weekend’s 10th International Commercial & Investment Arbitration Moot Competition.

Forming the champion team at the competition were the three students pictured above, from left: Tatiana Popovkina, Alexandra F. Lampe, and John A. Omotunde, The competition’s best oralist, meanwhile, was Olha Kaliuzhna, pictured above right; Lampe was the third runner-up. Kaliuzhna, along with Oleksandra Iordanova and Vladyslav Rudzinskyi, formed the second Georgia Law team, which also competed in advance rounds.

Coaching the teams were another LL.M. student, Gloria María Correa, as well as Georgia Law’s Dean, Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, whose specialty is international arbitration.

The competition took place at American University Washington College of Law in Washington, D.C. (prior post)

Georgia Law’s Master of Laws (LL.M.) curriculum offers U.S. legal education to lawyers trained overseas. The participants and coach in the D.C. competition, for instance, were trained in Germany, Nigeria, Panama, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.

For more information about the curriculum, which is administered by the law school’s Dean Rusk International Law Center, is available here.

Georgia Law LL.M. teams headed to Washington for International Commercial and Investment Arbitration Moot

Six members of the LL.M. Class of 2023 at the University of Georgia School of Law will travel to Washington, D.C., this weekend to take part in the 10th International Commercial & Investment Arbitration Moot Competition.

The students, who comprise two teams, earned their initial training as lawyers in 4 different countries. They are, left to right above: John Omotunde, Nigeria; Oleksandra Iordanova, Ukraine; Vladyslav Rudzinskyi, Ukraine; Tatyana Popovkina, Uzbekistan; Olha Kaliuzhna, Ukraine; and Alexandra Lampe, Germany. Their coach is Georgia Law Dean, Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, an expert in international arbitration law.

The competition – which will take place March 24 and 25 at American University Washington College of Law – involves a commercial dispute to be resolved under the rules of the Japan Commercial Arbitration Association.

Georgia Law’s Dean Rusk International Law Center administers the Master of Laws (LL.M.) curriculum. Details here.

“Intersection of Law and Technology,” 2023 symposium of Georgia Law Review, to take place on March 24

“The Intersection of Law and Technology,” the annual Georgia Law Review conference, will be held Friday, March 24, 2023, here at the University of Georgia School of Law.

According to organizers, the symposium will explore “cybersecurity, regulations affecting new technology, and much more.” Sessions include:

9:30-10:30 a.m.: “Cyber Regulations” with Professors Asaf Lubin, Indiana-Bloomington Law, and Gregory Dickinson, St. Thomas Law. Moderated by Georgia Law Professor Thomas Kadri.

10:45-11:45 a.m.: “Innovations in Space and War” with Professors Rebecca Hamilton, American University Law, and Monika Ehrman, SMU Law. Moderated by Georgia Law Professor Melissa J. “MJ” Durkee, who is also the law school’s Associate Dean for International Programs and Director of its Dean Rusk International Law Center.

1-2 p.m. “Regulatory Problems with New Technology” with Professors Amanda Reid, University of North Carolina Law, Dan Burk, University of California-Irvine Law, and Sharon Cop, University of Haifa Law. Moderated by Georgia Law Professor Adam Orford.

3:15-4:15 p.m. Keynote address by two distinguished Georgia Law alumni, Roy E. Hadley Jr., whose many positions include Independent Counsel, Adams and Reese LLP, Atlanta, and Matthew Grocoff, whose many positions include founding principal of THRIVE Collaborative, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

CLE credit will be available. Details, including in-person and online registration, here.