Submitted by ArbitralWomen Member Rachel Chiu, together with Laura Canet, Derin Coker, and Ayelet Hochman
Young Mute-Off Thursdays (the younger sister group to Mute-Off Thursdays) will celebrate its First Year Anniversary on 26 August 2021, to mark one year of weekly Thursday meetings and to celebrate our international community of bright and capable young women practitioners in arbitration.
Young Mute-Off Thursdays is another story of creating opportunity for women in the legal profession amidst the challenges of practice in the Covid-19 pandemic. In May 2020, when many of us were subject to strict pandemic-related social restrictions, ArbitralWomen member Rachel Chiu reached out to Ayelet Hochman (a colleague whom she had met at a conference before the pandemic) for a telephone catch-up. This phone call was a small part of our new reality, in which professional connections are harder to maintain and create.
Just a few months earlier, ArbitralWomen members Ema Vidak Gojković, Gaëlle Filhol, Catherine Anne Kunz and Claire Morel de Westgaver launched the successful online forum Mute-Off Thursdays. The forum is designed to help senior women in arbitration share knowledge and stay connected with the arbitration community and combat the challenges of underrepresentation and invisibility that women practitioners faced, which risked being amplified under the new normal of socially distanced working and living.
The phone call between Ayelet and Rachel marked the start of a new online forum where young women practitioners in arbitration from all corners of the world could meet, network, and find support. They reached out to two other colleagues with different backgrounds and from different jurisdictions, Derin Coker and Laura Canet, to help build this community. Together, with the support of the Mute-Off Thursdays’ team, Derin, Laura, Ayelet and Rachel launched Young Mute-Off Thursdays in August 2020!
Ever since, Young Mute-Off Thursdays has met every Thursday, at the same time (9am ET / 2pm GMT), over Zoom for 30 minutes. Every Thursday, a woman practitioner (either a senior practitioner in the field or a member from the group) is invited to lead a discussion on a select topic. A wide range of topics have been discussed at these Thursday sessions, from developments in the law, drafting and advocacy tips, to maintaining sustainable success and work-life balance. Occasionally, senior practitioners share details about their person journey in legal practice, which is always an inspiration to members in the group. Young Mute-Off Thursdays also hosts regular networking sessions for members to interact with each other in smaller groups, and features workshops by external speakers on law-related topics such as accounting, expert work, and mental health.
A year on, Young Mute-Off Thursdays’ community has grown from a small list of each co-chair’s personal contacts to a strong following of more than 200 young women practitioners from all over the world, from West Africa, to Europe, the Americas, India and Singapore!
At Young Mute-Off Thursdays, many women are in the early stages of their stages and in the process of establishing their professional network. As such, Young Mute-Off Thursdays serves as a platform for members to build and maintain their network amongst their peers, and a bridge between young and senior practitioners, to benefit from their experience, mentorship, support and collaboration. It also aims to provide women practitioners with a safe space for knowledge sharing and discussion, assist young female practitioners with raising their profile, and strives to promote a culture of collegiality and kindness.
As part of its anniversary celebrations, Young Mute-Off Thursdays will host a special one-hour session on 26 August at 9am ET / 2pm GMT / 9pm SG. It will feature a practical workshop by professional coach Amanda Pelham Green that will aim to equip participants with career skills to help them be the best versions of themselves in practice, and bring out the best of others in their teams. Participants will also be invited to interact in smaller break-out rooms. Details of the session may be found on the ArbitralWomen events page here.
The event is open to ArbitralWomen members up to 7-PQE. If you would like to attend the Special Anniversary session or are interested to join the group, please send your request to email@example.com.
Young Mute-Off Thursdays’ full syllabus for its first year (August 2020–August 2021)
|Session||Topic||Speaker / Affiliation|
|1||Building your career in international arbitration||Jacomijn van Haersolte-van Hof, LCIA|
|2||Navigating cross-border sensitivities||Rose Rameau, Rameau International Law|
|3||Are instant messages (social media messages) discoverable forms of evidence?||Claire Morel de Westgaver, BCLP|
|4||How to hone your advocacy and public speaking skills||Kirtan Prasad, RPC|
|5||Finding your niche in arbitration||Wendy Miles, Twenty Essex|
|6||Tips on Pitching Your Case to Third Party Funders||Rachel Chiu, BCLP|
|7||Security for claims applications in arbitration proceedings||Karolina Latasz, Allen & Overy|
|8||Career paths in arbitration: Working as an arbitrator / how to build your experience and portfolio as an arbitrator||Maxi Scherer, Wilmerhale|
|9||Cross-examination of expert witnesses||Srishti Jain, Keidan Harrison Disputes|
|10||Mental resilience and sustainable success||Claire Williamson, Leading Minds|
|11||Working with experts in international arbitration||Daniela Bambaci, BRG; and Jessica Pineda, PGMBM|
|12||Discussion on the differing approaches between jurisdictions on law applicable to arbitration agreement||Saadia Bhatty, Gide Loyrette Nouel|
|13||Cyber Security and International Arbitration: Understanding the ICCA Protocol||Wendy Gonzales and Sophie Nappert, CyberArb|
|14||Networking Session: Thanksgiving Special|
|15||Acting as a Tribunal’s Secretary||Catherine Schroeder, Schroeder Arbitration|
|16||How to recover internal in-house legal costs at the end of an arbitration||Elizabeth Chan, Three Crowns|
|17||ICCA Report on Gender Diversity – Presentation on work and findings||Jennifer Ivers, White & Case; Nicola Peart, Three Crowns|
|20||Building Your Brand||Yaara Diechter, Robus Consulting|
|21||Greener arbitrations||Lucy Greenwood, Greenwood Arbitration|
|22||Corruption in international arbitration||Patricia Snell, Covington & Burlington|
|23||Demistyfing quantum evidence workshop||Saana Babaa, EY Disputes|
|24||Creating and Maintaining Networks in a Multicultural Environment||Yael Ribco, Shearman & Sterling|
|25||How to survive your first appointment as an arbitrator?||Gaëlle Filhol, Betto Perben Pradel Filhol|
|26||Key updates to LCIA Rules 2020 and ICC Rules 2021||Eleanor Scoggings and Ange la Casey, LALIVE|
|27||The Future of Investor-State Relations||Melida Hodgson, Jenner and Block|
|28||Making transitions in a cross-border career||Chiann Bao, Arbitration Chambers|
|29||Experience-sharing session – Virtual Hearings|
|30||Using Harvard Negotiation Workshop Principles to Improve your Advocacy||Ema Vidak, Vidak Arbitration|
|31||The Environmental and Social Impact of Investment Law and Disputes||Angela Ha, Volterra Fietta|
|32||Networking session: Easter Special|
|33||How to use intersectionality as your superpower||Ariel White – Tsimikalis, BCLP|
|34||JOINT SESSION MUTE-OFF ANNIVERSARY: Imposter Syndrome and how to overcome it|
|35||Preliminary assessments in international arbitration||Viktoria Schneider, Hane feld|
|36||Arbitration in India||Ishita Mishtra, Chambers of Mr. Gourab Banerji|
|37||Experience-sharing session: Document Production|
|38||Mediating complex cross-border commercial disputes||Jane Player, Independent Mediators|
|39||Making sense of financial statements||Vikki Wall, Haberman Ilett|
|40||Do’s and don’ts in persuading arbitrators||Elena Gutierrez, Independent Arbitrator|
|41||Tribunal’s questions to parties outside the hearing: dos and don’ts||Maria Hauser-Morel, Hanefeld|
|42||Advocacy and drafting tips: Keep it simple, keep it interesting||Sapna Jhangiani QC, Clyde & Co|
|43||Draft Guidelines on Standards of Practice in International Arbitration||Lucy Reed, Arbitration Chambers|
|44||Gender statistics in arbitration||Umika Sharma, NUS PHD Researcher|
|45||How to Find and Maintain Work Life Balance||Kristen Young, White & Case|
|46||Networking session: Celebrating our Accomplishments|
|47||The role of amicus curiae in international arbitration||Dr Crina Baltag, Stockholm University|
|48||Role of ICSID and other institutions in administering investment disputes||Professor Emilia Onyema, SOAS University of London|
|49||Building your career through changes between law firms and different roles in arbitration||Marie-Isabelle Delleur, Clifford Chance|
|50||The Margin of Appreciation in Investment Arbitration||Danielle Morris, Wilmerhale|
Young Mute-Off Thursdays founding co-chairs
- Laura Canet, Associate, Betto Perben Pradel Filhol
- Derin Coker, Associate, Peter Dovey and Co Solicitors
- Ayelet Hochman, Associate, White & Case
- Rachel Chiu, Associate, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner