Ben SandersonOf Counsel
Ben Sanderson is Of Counsel and the Global Practice Manager responsible for the International Arbitration practice at DLA Piper. Ben also sits as an arbitrator and is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
He has extensive experience advising clients in international arbitration disputes across a range of sectors including energy, mining and technology. He has represented both States and commercial parties in investment treaty claims. He has co-led teams which have obtained decisive victories for the Republic of Kenya, the Republic of Zambia and the Republic of Lithuania.
Ben is ranked by Chambers. Legal 500 and Who’s Who Legal. He is also a member of ICC UK’s Arbitration and ADR Committee.
Ben is a visiting lecturer on international arbitration and public international law for the Masters programme at Universidad Carlos III, Madrid, and at IE University, Madrid. He also regularly speaks at arbitration conferences.
Public International Law
• Representing Hungary in ICSID proceedings relating to an investment in the waste management sector (Christopher Jock Murdoch Mackenzie v. Hungary, ICSID Case No. ARB/21/66).
• Representing Hungary in annulment proceedings relating to an ICSID award (Sodexo Pass International SAS v. Hungary, ICSID Case No. ARB/14/20).
• Representing Lithuania in the successful defence of a USD 300 million claim brought by a Russian fund in connection with the renationalization of Bank Snoras AS (Fund for the Protection of Investors’ Rights in Foreign States v Lithuania, UNCITRAL, PCA Case No. 2019-48).
• Representing INTERPOL in PCA arbitration proceedings relating to a public international law claim brought following the arrest in China of INTERPOL’s former President (Ge Gao, Hongwei Meng, Zihong Meng and Ziheng Meng (China) v INTERPOL, PCA Case No. 2019-19).
• Representing UNHCR is various disputes with commercial contractors.
• Representing the Government of Kenya in the successful defence of a bilateral investment treaty claim brought under the auspices of ICSID by investors in the mining sector (Cortec v. Republic of Kenya, ICSID Case No. ARB 15/29).
• Representing the Government of Timor-Leste in the defence of a bilateral investment treaty claim brought under the auspices of ICSID by investors in the energy sector (Lighthouse Corporation v. Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, ICSID Case No. ARB 15/2).
• Representing a UK services company in a bilateral investment treaty claim against the Republic of Argentina, involving complex assignment issues (ICS Inspection and Control Services Limited (United Kingdom) v. Republic of Argentina, UNCITRAL, PCA Case No. 2010-9).
• Representing an African government in the defence of a bilateral investment treaty claim (UNCITRAL) brought by investors in the mining sector.
• Representing a global steel company in respect of a multi-billion mining dispute in Africa and advising on potential investment treaty claims to be brought under the auspices of ICSID.
• Representing investors in ICSID arbitration proceedings against the Republic of Georgia under the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) and two bilateral investment treaties (Ioannis Kardassopoulos v. Georgia, ICSID Case No. ARB/05/18).
• Representing the Government of Zambia in UNCITRAL arbitration proceedings relating to a multi-million dollar contract for the construction of housing.
• Representing a Russian investment company in LCIA arbitration and English High Court proceedings in respect of a shareholder dispute.
• Representing a Taiwanese solar energy company in relation to disputes arising under a supply agreement.
• Representing a European affiliate of a US energy company in relation to an ad hoc arbitration concerning various disputes arising under a turn-key contract for the construction of a 1200 MW gas-fired power station in Spain.
• Acting for a Singaporean energy company in respect of its rights under a fuel supply agreement with a Venezuelan state entity.
• Representing a US supplier of gas turbine generators in relation to an ICC arbitration concerning various disputes arising under a supply agreement with a Kuwaiti company.
• Advising a US company on enforcement of a multi-billion dollar ICC arbitration award against a Middle East State.
• Acting for a UK company in appeal to the European Court of Justice relating to the European Commission Decision on the Copper Fittings Cartel (Case C-286/11P European Commission v Tomkins Ltd).
- St. Catherine’s College, Oxford, UK, B.A., English and Modern Languages (French) (1999) Hons. First Class
- Université de Paris III - Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris, France, Masters
"Ben has very good judgement, is focused on the case and maintains excellent client relations."
• Legal 500 Spain - Dispute Resolution 2022 – ranked as a Rising Star: "Ben Sanderson is easy to communicate with, very responsive, provides clear answers, thinks ahead, has deep knowledge about investment arbitration and gives a sense of confidence."
• Legal 500 UK Public International Law 2023 – mention: "Ben Sanderson sees the big picture, is pragmatic in his advice, and systematic in driving contentious matters to the best possible conclusions. Extremely sharp and experienced, he displays a very strong capacity to analyse complex matters quickly."
• Legal 500 UK International Arbitration 2023 – mention
• Global Arbitration Review – GAR 30 2022: Counsel Ben Sanderson in Madrid has great problem-solving creativity and is "very personable and always available to assist."
• Who’s Who Legal Arbitration – Future Leaders 2023: "He is a seasoned international arbitration specialist who is particularly good at distilling complex disputes and quickly getting to the heart of the matter."
- “A Roadmap for Africa: Reconciling Climate Change Policies and Investment Law Obligations”, African Society of International Law, publication pending.
- “Hearings in International Arbitration: What has the pandemic taught us about virtual hearings and what they can offer in the future”, published in “The Impact of COVID on International Disputes”, edited by S. Lalani and S. Shapiro, Brill, 2022.
- “Africa, In The Vanguard: Africa’s Role In Shaping The Future Of Investor-State Arbitration”, published in Alternative Dispute Resolution Journal, Nairobi Centre for International Arbitration, 2022.
- “Spain Investment Treaty Arbitration”, published in Lexology Getting The Deal Through, Investment Treaty Arbitration 2022.
- “Awards: Challenges”, published in GAR’s The Guide to Challenging and Enforcing Arbitration Awards, 2nd edition, 2021.
- “Investment Arbitration in Africa”, published in GAR's Middle Eastern and African Arbitration Review 2021.
- “Spain Investment Treaty Arbitration”, published in Lexology Getting The Deal Through, Investment Treaty Arbitration 2021.
- “Recent Trends in Investment Arbitration in Africa”, published in GAR's Middle Eastern and African Arbitration Review 2019.
- “Awards: Challenges”, published in GAR’s The Guide to Challenging and Enforcing Arbitration Awards, 2019.
- “Developments in African Arbitration”, published in GAR's Middle Eastern and African Arbitration Review 2018.
Ben regularly undertakes pro bono work including delivering training on advocacy and access to justice projects. Ben is also a Senior Sponsor on DLA Piper’s Global Scholarships Program which supports outstanding law students in developing countries reach their potential.
• Panelist, “Securing funding for dispute resolution in Africa”, African Arbitration Association 2nd Annual Conference, Accra, Ghana, 5 November 2022
• Speaker, “A Roadmap for Africa: Reconciling Climate Change Policies and Investment Law Obligations”, African Society of International Law 11th Conference, Cairo, Egypt, 28 October 2022
• Moderator, “Perspectivas “in house” de la eficiencia en arbitrajes internacionales”, Open de Arbitraje, Madrid, Spain, 7 October 2021
• Panelist, “Top tips for your first arbitral appointment”, ICC UK Arbitration & ADR Technical Webinar, 22 April 2021
• Moderator, “Arbitraje en África”, Open de Arbitraje, Madrid, Spain (online), 7 October 2020
• Moderator, “Fraud and Corruption in International Arbitration”, 8th East Africa International Arbitration Conference, online, 27 August 2020
• Keynote address, “Tracking Africa’s Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Mechanisms: It is Business Unusual”, 2nd Annual Conference of the Nairobi Centre for International Arbitration, Mombasa, Kenya, 5 March 2020
• Keynote speaker and presenter, “Investment Arbitration in Nepal”, Kathmandu, Nepal, 7 September 2019
• Speaker, “Investment Arbitration Planning”, Tel Aviv, Israel, 13 May 2019
• Speaker, “Arbitraje de inversión y el derecho internacional público”, IPFA Américas, Arbitraje Internacional en Proyectos de APP en Perú, Lima, Peru, 5 December 2018
• Moderator, “Arbitraje de inversión vs. Arbitraje contractual del Estado”, IPFA Américas, Arbitraje Internacional en Proyectos de APP en Perú, Lima, Peru, 5 December 2018
• Speaker, “Arbitration in Zimbabwe and Investment Disputes”, Harare, Zimbabwe, 7 November 2018
• Speaker, “Arbitration in Uganda: Shaping the Future” (in conjunction with the ICC), Kampala, Uganda, 2 June 2017
• Speaker, “International Arbitration in Ethiopia, East Africa and Beyond:
Prospects, Possibilities and Challenges” (in conjunction with the ICC), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 31 May 2017
• Speaker, “Arbitration in Zambia & Beyond - Challenges and Opportunities” (in conjunction with the ICC), Lusaka, Zambia, 17 October 2016
• Speaker, International Arbitration Debate - The Motion: This House Believes That International Arbitration Has Become A “Lawyers' Jamboree” Rather Than A “Linchpin of Justice”, 12 March 2015
Memberships And Affiliations
ICC UK Arbitration and ADR Committee 2022 – to date
African Society of International Law – Co-chair of the Dispute Resolution Interest Group 2022 – to date
Mentor on the London Very Young Arbitration Practitioners Mentorship Programme
Mentor on the African Arbitration Association Mentorship Programme
London Court of International Arbitration
International Bar Association
British Institute of International and Comparative Law – Investment Treaty Forum
My latest insights
The European Commission formally proposes to withdraw from the ECT
21 July 2023 .3 minute read
English Commercial Court declines Spain’s attempt to resist enforcement of intra-EU ICSID...
5 July 2023 .17 minute read