Irish barrister James Bridgeman SC has been elected global president of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb).
Mr Bridgeman, an international arbitrator specialising in commercial, technology and construction disputes, holds the role for 2018.
The Chartered Institute of Arbitrators is a world-wide professional body of 15,000 members engaged in private dispute resolution based across 133 countries and supported by an international network of 38 branches, including the Irish branch.
The Irish branch is one of the largest branches with 650 members across both jurisdictions on the island of Ireland.
Commenting on his appointment, Mr Bridgeman (pictured) said: “I am honoured to take up this position at a very important time for private dispute resolution in Ireland and across the world.
“It is a happy coincidence that my term of office coincides with the date on which the Mediation Act 2017 becomes effective. This has been the fruit of many years of work by the Irish Branch of the CIArb and other stakeholders and it demonstrates the commitment of the Government to the establishment of a mediation culture in Ireland. Our members are ready, willing and able to respond to the anticipated increase in demand for mediation from business and the public generally.”
Mr Bridgeman also said that Ireland was becoming increasingly recognised for its suitability as a jurisdiction where international trade and commerce disputes can be resolved, and suggested Ireland could benefit from a rise in bilateral and multi-lateral trade and investment agreements following the UK’s exit from the European Union.
He said the themes of his presidence would be “Quality Assurance and Ethics in Private Dispute Resolution”.
Mr Bridgeman said: “We will encourage a conversation on these topics in our conferences and seminars to maintain and build upon our standing as a premier dispute resolution membership body.”