Investment Law and Arbitration Lab

The Investment Law and Arbitration Lab, launched in 2023, aims to facilitate investor-state dispute settlement reform conducted by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Working Group III. It also aims to serve as an expert platform for studying various reform issues, such as the feasibility of an appeal in investment arbitration, development of procedures of an advisory center, a permanent investment court, etc.

Participation in the Lab is an excellent opportunity to engage in research supervised by experts specializing in investment law and arbitration and to contribute to the further progress of the reform. The Lab entails teamwork on topical issues, involving thorough and systematic analysis of ISDS institutions and evaluation of specific reform proposals (for example, creation of a permanent investment court). The Lab, thus, aims to develop creative and ingenious solutions with the contribution of its participants.

The Lab’s papers may be utilized in the Center’s work with the UNCITRAL Working Group III and sent to UNCITRAL on behalf of the ICRLC as an observer in this Working Group, as well as published on the Center’s website.

Research advisors

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Sergey Alekhin
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Anna Kozyakova


Advisory Centre

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Daria Zavershinskaya
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Artem Kasumyan
Ksenia Kuritsyna

Procedural Rules Reform and Cross-cutting Issues

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Sergey Korotkov
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Valeria Matorina
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Elena Murashko
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Nikita Sinitsyn

Appellate Mechanism

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Daria Zavershinskaya
Ksenia Kuritsyna


Young professionals with a law degree, a master’s or specialist’s degree, and proficient in English are welcome to join the Lab. Master students can also participate in the Lab if demonstrate a thorough knowledge of investment law and arbitration, and sufficient motivation.

To participate in the selection process, a CV and a motivation letter detailing interest in investment law and arbitration research shall be sent to

The application should also include samples of written papers on international law (if available) and a response to the following question: “How will the creation of a permanent investment court affect the ISDS system: will it solve its problems or create new ones?”. The response should not exceed one page of typed text.

The Lab does not require full-time participation but requires sufficient time to work on research projects. Researchers may participate in the Lab in a hybrid format (online/offline). They also can use all information resources available at the Center’s Library, including databases.

Participation in the Lab is limited to 1 year.

Researchers are paid a modest fee.

Frequently asked questions

1. What are the topics that I can work on in the Lab?

Participants will analyze proposals for investor-state dispute resolution reform discussed in the UNCITRAL Working Group III. The Lab focuses on proposals for the creation and possible image of an appeal mechanism for awards rendered by the investment tribunals, an advisory center, a permanent investment court, etc. Participants could also offer their own ideas on certain aspects of the reform, based on current international practice and the views of the states participating in the Working Group.

2. May I choose my own topic?

The Lab's topics are limited to the agenda of UNCITRAL Working Group III. Participants choose the key issues for their research together with the Lab’s research advisors.

3. What is the estimated workload for the Lab’s participants?

The workload is determined on a case-by-case basis taking into account that the Lab does not require full-time participation, and involves a team work on the research. Participation in the Lab requires a certain level of expertise, which is taken into account when estimating the amount of time required from the participant to complete the task.

4. Who will be considered the author of the final research paper: the ICRLC or a participant?

The final research paper may be sent to UNCITRAL Working Group III on behalf of the ICLRC as an observer in this Working Group and published on the ICLRC’s website. The research paper may contain an indication that it was prepared by the participants within the Lab. Conditions for use of research materials in own publications of a Lab’s participant are discussed individually.

5. In what language do I need to submit my application?

Your CV and motivation letter can be drafted both in English and in Russian.

6. Is only online format possible?

Researchers can participate in the Lab exclusively online but the hybrid format is also possible.

7. How is the work in the Lab structured?

The Lab requires an in-depth and thorough research of the issues of its agenda. Participants work in small groups under the guidance of research advisors that determine how the research is structured, guide its progress, and give feedback on the researchers' texts.

8. What are the opportunities that the Lab gives to the participants?

Participants will be able to work in a team under the guidance of experts specializing in investment law and arbitration, and strengthen their expertise. They will also have the opportunity to prepare and publish a specialized research paper, and contribute to the work of a body of an international organization (UNCITRAL).

9. May I join the Lab?

We are looking for candidates with a law degree (Master's or Specialist's), proficient in English and interested in investment law and arbitration. Master students may also take part in exceptional cases. The Lab is open to both Russian citizens and foreigners.