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Michele Potestà specializes in international commercial and investment arbitration. Over the past ten years, Michele has participated in over 30 international investment and commercial arbitrations as counsel, arbitrator and secretary of the tribunal, under all major arbitral rules (ICC, ICSID, UNCITRAL, SCAI, CAM, DIAC, Danish Institute of Arbitration, and others), and in different jurisdictions.

Michele’s areas of expertise include energy and natural resources (oil, gas, mining and solar energy), pharmaceuticals, telecommunications, international sales, banking and finance, services, shareholders disputes, real estate and construction, aviation and IT, among others. Michele has also advised sovereign states on their investment treaty programs.

Michele is regularly appointed as arbitrator. He has sat as sole arbitrator and co-arbitrator under various rules, including the rules of the ICC, the Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC), the Danish Institute of Arbitration, and the Swiss Rules of International Arbitration. He is listed in the panel of arbitrators at VIAC, LCIA, SIAC, AIAC, and Delos.

In 2020, Michele was named the most highly regarded individual in Europe by Who’s Who Legal Arbitration: Future Leaders (Non-Partners), where he was described as a “super smart” and “simply outstanding” lawyer, and commended for his “great breadth and depth of learning on investment treaty arbitration”.

Michele is also a senior researcher at the Geneva Center for International Dispute Settlement (CIDS) where he co-leads a research project on the reform of investor-state dispute settlement (“ISDS”). He is an adjunct professor at the Geneva LLM in International Dispute Settlement (MIDS), for which he teaches investment arbitration. He has authored numerous publications on issues of investment and commercial arbitration and is frequently invited to speak at arbitration conferences.

An Italian national, Michele is qualified to practice law in Italy and registered with the Geneva bar (foreign lawyers section). He holds a Ph.D., a bachelor and a master’s degree from the University of Milan. Michele speaks English, Italian, French, German, and Spanish.

Selected publications

Preliminary Objections to Dismiss Claims that are Manifestly without Legal Merit under Rule 41(5) of the ICSID Arbitration Rules

in: C. Baltag (Ed.), ICSID Convention after 50 Years - Unsettled Issues, Alphen aan den Rijn 2017, pp. 249-271

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Can the Mauritius Convention serve as a model for the reform of investor-State arbitration in connection with the introduction of a permanent investment tribunal or an appeal mechanism? Analysis and roadmap

CIDS Research Paper, Geneva 2016, 115 pages

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Legitimate Expectations in Investment Treaty Law: Understanding the Roots and the Limits of a Controversial Concept

ICSID Review—Foreign Investment Law Journal 2013, pp. 88–122

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See all publications

Selected publications

Preliminary Objections to Dismiss Claims that are Manifestly without Legal Merit under Rule 41(5) of the ICSID Arbitration Rules

in: C. Baltag (Ed.), ICSID Convention after 50 Years - Unsettled Issues, Alphen aan den Rijn 2017, pp. 249-271

Download (pdf)

Can the Mauritius Convention serve as a model for the reform of investor-State arbitration in connection with the introduction of a permanent investment tribunal or an appeal mechanism? Analysis and roadmap

CIDS Research Paper, Geneva 2016, 115 pages

Download (pdf)

Legitimate Expectations in Investment Treaty Law: Understanding the Roots and the Limits of a Controversial Concept

ICSID Review—Foreign Investment Law Journal 2013, pp. 88–122

Download (pdf)
See all my publications

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