The Twelth Annual Smit-Lowenfeld Prize

Twelfth Annual Prize Awarded to:

Caline Mouawad and Jessica Beess und Chrostin

The twelfth annual Smit-Lowenfeld Prize has been awarded to  Caline Mouawad and Jessica Beess und Chrostin for best article in the field of international arbitration published in 2021. The prize is being awarded for their article entitled “The Illegality Objection in Investor-State Arbitration,” which was published in Arbitration International (Vol. 37, No. 1).

The article methodically reviews investment awards that involved an illegality objection. While corruption in investment arbitration has been heavily analyzed, the authors explore the diverse range of objections based on illegal investor conduct other than corruption in investor-state arbitration by examining the analytical framework tribunals apply and the evolving and competing applicable legal standards. The article also identifies established principles and emerging trends to help investment tribunals create a more uniform approach to the illegality objection in future cases.

The prize was presented to Ms. Mouawad and Ms. Beess und Chrostin on January 26, 2023. In making the award, Lawrence W. Newman, Presiding Member of the IACNY and Of Counsel at Baker McKenzie, said: “This is an important article on a heretofore unexplored area of investment treaty arbitration scholarship—the responses of arbitration tribunals to assertions by host countries that claimant investors obtained their investments in violation of local law.”


The Smit-Lowenfeld Prize

The Smit-Lowenfeld Prize is awarded annually by the International Arbitration Club of New York to recognize the outstanding article published in the previous year on any aspect of international arbitration. The Prize honors the late Hans Smit of Columbia Law School and Andreas F. Lowenfeld of New York University School of Law, both renowned scholars in international litigation and arbitration, well known arbitrators, and dearly missed members of this Club.

The deadline for receipt of submissions for each year’s competition is April 30. Nominations can be submitted to

The winning article will be selected by a jury composed of members of the International Arbitration Club of New York. The winner of the Smit-Lowenfeld Prize will receive an honorarium of US$2500 to be presented at a ceremony in New York. The International Arbitration Club of New York considers articles submitted directly to the competition by the authors or their peers, as well as articles chosen through the Club’s survey of articles appearing in leading international journals. The winning article is chosen from those gathered through a two-phase winnowing process, involving close scrutiny by juries of members of the International Arbitration Club of New York. The articles are judged according to the following criteria: Originality of the subject matter or ideas developed therein; Quality of the writing style and expression; Significance of the piece to the field of international arbitration, and Scholarship, or the analytical rigor of the article and its contribution to existing scholarship. No weight is given as to where the article is published, the general popularity or acceptance of the article by others, or to the author’s reputation or standing.