Dottrina: The Doctrine of Punitive Damages and International Arbitration

Giovanni Zarra, The Doctrine of Punitive Damages and International Arbitration, in Diritto del commercio internazionale, 2016, 963-991

This article analyzes the possibility to award punitive damages in international arbitration. First of all, it studies the functions of punitive damages in US litigation and the reasons behind the growing interest for this remedy in civil law countries and in the doctrine of international arbitration. Secondly, this article argues that, notwithstanding the fact that arbitration has become the natural judge of international commercial disputes, the competence of international arbitrators cannot be extended to remedies of quasi-criminal nature, such as punitive damages. The work finally briefly analyzes the possibility to award punitive damages in international investment arbitration and demonstrates that it is not possible to observe in international law a remedy which could be compared to punitive damages as recognized in national law systems.

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