Arbitrability Decisions Before, During, and after Arbitration

By John J. Barceló

The arbitration-litigation process respecting international commercial arbitration can be divided into three principal stages. Stage One occurs before a national court where a primary issue is whether the court should decide the merits of the dispute or refer the parties to arbitration. This decision turns on whether the parties have entered a binding and enforceable agreement to arbitrate their dispute -- in other words, whether the dispute is arbitrable.

John J. Barceló III William Nelson Cromwell Professor of International and Comparative Law
Photo of John Barceló

Contact Information

Cornell Law School
318 Myron Taylor Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-4901

Phone: (607) 255-3604
Fax: (607) 255-7193


Kara Conklin
Cornell Law School
249 Hughes Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853-4901

Professional Biography

Prof. John Barceló, a leading scholar in international trade, international commercial arbitration, trade agreements, European Union law and international law, has been principally responsible for developing Cornell's international legal studies program over several decades. Prof. Barceló is the founder and the current co-director of the Cornell-University of Paris I Summer Institute of International & Comparative Law and founder of dual degree programs linking Cornell and Paris I, Cornell and Sciences Po, and Cornell and Humboldt University in Berlin. He was the inaugural Reich Director of the Berger International Legal Studies Program, a position he held for more than 40 years.

Prof. Barceló is a former consultant for the Import Trade Administration of the United States Department of Commerce and has been active as an arbitrator (chair, international arbitral tribunal under UNCITRAL rules). He teaches International Commercial Arbitration, WTO and International Trade Law, European Union Law, and International Business Transactions. He was named Chevalier de l’Ordre national de la Legion d’honneur in 2012 by decree of President Nicolas Sarkozy of France.


B.A., Tulane University, 1963
J.D., Tulane University, 1966
S.J.D., Harvard Law School, 1977