HCCH 125
Ways Forward: Challenges and Opportunities
in an Increasingly Connected World
Hong Kong | 18 -20 April 2018


(in order of appearance on the programme)

Mr Xie Feng, Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China in the Hong Kong SAR
Male, born in April 1964. Bachelor of Law, Master of Public Administration.
1986-1989 Staff member, Department of West European Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)
1989-1993 Attaché, then Third Secretary, Chinese Embassy in the Republic of Malta
1993-2000 Third Secretary, Deputy Division Director, then Division Director, Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs, MFA
2000-2003 Counselor and Spokesperson, Chinese Embassy in the United States of America
2003-2005 Counselor, Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs, MFA
2005-2008 Deputy Director-General, Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs, MFA
2008-2010 Minister, Chinese Embassy in the United States of America
2010-2014 Director-General, Department of North American and Oceanian Affairs, MFA
2014-2017 Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the People's Republic of China to the Republic of Indonesia
2017- Commissioner of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Married, with one son.

The Honourable Chief Justice Geoffrey Ma Tao-li, GBM, Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal of the Hong Kong SAR
Chief Justice Ma was appointed Chief Justice of the Court of Final Appeal on 1 September 2010.

Chief Justice Ma was born in Hong Kong in 1956. He studied law and graduated with an LLB from Birmingham University in 1977. After completing the Bar Finals in 1978, he was called to the English Bar (Gray’s Inn) in 1978, the Hong Kong Bar in 1980, the Bar of the State of Victoria in Australia in 1983 and the Bar of Singapore in 1990. He was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1993. He became an Honorary Bencher of Gray’s Inn in 2004. In 2011, he was admitted to the degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) by the University of Birmingham. In 2012, he became an Honorary Fellow of Harris Manchester College, Oxford. In 2016, he became an Honorary Bencher of the Middle Temple and was admitted to the degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa) by the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Chief Justice Ma was appointed a Recorder of the Court of First Instance from 2000 to 2001 before his appointment as a Judge of the Court of First Instance in 2001. He was appointed a Justice of Appeal in 2002, and became Chief Judge of the High Court in 2003. Before joining the Judiciary, Chief Justice Ma was in private practice in Hong Kong and in Singapore.

Chief Justice Ma is a Patron of the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law; he is also a Patron of the International Advocacy Training Council.

Chief Justice Ma was awarded the Grand Bauhinia Medal in June 2012.

Dr Christophe Bernasconi, Secretary General of the Hague Conference on Private International Law
Dr Christophe Bernasconi is the fourth Secretary-General of the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH). He took office on 1 July 2013. He had joined the Permanent Bureau of the HCCH in September 1997.

He has long-standing expertise in the field of international civil procedural law (jurisdiction of courts, recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments, service of process and taking of evidence abroad, access to justice, etc.), international administrative cooperation (Apostille; he is the designer and principal administrator of the electronic Apostille Program, e-APP), international commercial and finance law (intermediated securities), as well as international child protection law (parental child abduction, protection of children generally). His current focus is on developing and implementing various management improvement initiatives at the Permanent Bureau, and on furthering the global visibility of the Hague Conference.

He holds a law degree from Fribourg University in Switzerland (magna cum laude; bilingual German/French), an LL.M. degree in comparative law from McGill University in Montreal (Canada), and a doctoral degree in Private International Law from Fribourg University (summa cum laude).

Before joining the Permanent Bureau, Dr Bernasconi lectured at the University of Fribourg, worked as Legal Expert at the Swiss Institute of Comparative Law in Lausanne, and as Scientific Collaborator at the Federal Office of Justice in Switzerland. He also advised practitioners on various Private International Law matters.

Ms Teresa Cheng, GBS, SC, JP, Secretary for Justice of the Hong Kong SAR
Ms Teresa Cheng, SC, was appointed Secretary for Justice on January 6, 2018. She was a Senior Counsel in private practice before joining the Government. She is also a chartered engineer, chartered arbitrator and accredited mediator. She was frequently engaged as arbitrator or counsel in complex international commercial or investment disputes.

Ms. Cheng was one of the founders and Chairman of the Asian Academy of International Law. She is a Past Vice President of the International Council of Commercial Arbitration, Past Vice President of the ICC International Court of Arbitration and Past Chairperson of Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre.

In 2008, she became the first Asian woman elected through a global election as President of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators. She served as Deputy Judge / Recorder in the Court of First Instance of the High Court of Hong Kong from 2011 to 2017. She is a member of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes Panel of Arbitrators, and was a member of the World Bank's Sanctions Board.

Ms. Cheng is a Fellow of King's College in London, and was the Course Director of the International Arbitration and Dispute Settlement Course at the Law School of Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Prof Jürgen Basedow
Prof. Dr. Dr.h.c.mult. Jürgen Basedow, LL.M. (Harvard Univ.)
Director emeritus, Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law, Hamburg; Professor of Law, Univ. of Hamburg; Member of the Institut de droit international; Titular Member and Secretary General of the International Academy of Comparative Law (2008-2014); member of the International Academy of Commercial and Consumer Law (President 2006-2008); member of several advisory bodies of the German government and of the European Commission, inter alia Chairman of the German Monopolies Commission (2000 to 2008); member (President 2015-2018) of the Groupe européen de droit international privé and of Deutscher Rat für Internationales Privatrecht; for further information, see http://www.mpipriv.de -> Academic Staff -> Emeriti -> Basedow.

Lord Collins of Mapesbury (Lawrence Collins)
Lord Collins of Mapesbury, LLD, FBA (Lawrence Collins) was a Justice of the UK Supreme Court from 2009-2011. He now sits as a Non-Permanent Judge of the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal.

He was educated at Cambridge University and Columbia University Law School, and was a partner in Herbert Smith & Co (now Herbert Smith Freehills) for 35 years until 2000. In 1997 he was one of the first two solicitors to be appointed Queen's Counsel. In 2000 he became the first solicitor to be appointed to the High Court bench (as Mr Justice Lawrence Collins). In 2007 he was appointed a member of the Court of Appeal (as Lord Justice Lawrence Collins), and in 2009 he became a Law Lord in the House of Lords (as Lord Collins of Mapesbury).

In 1975 he became an editor of Dicey & Morris on the Conflict of Laws, of which he has been General Editor since 1987 (now in its 15th edition as Dicey, Morris & Collins on the Conflict of Laws). He is also the author of books on the conflict of laws, public international law and European law.

He is a Professor of Law at University College London and a Visiting professor at New York University School of Law. In 1994 he was awarded the degree of LLD from Cambridge University for distinction by original contribution to the advancement of the science of law. He is a Fellow of the British Academy, a member of the Institut de droit international, and a member of the American Law Institute.

Prof Richard Fentiman
Richard Fentiman is Professor of Private International Law at the University of Cambridge. He has written and lectured extensively on private international law and is the author of International Commercial Litigation (2nd edn, 2015) and Foreign Law in English Courts (1998). His research is primarily concerned with international commercial litigation, especially issues relating to jurisdiction, cross-border injunctions, the proof of foreign law, and the analysis of strategy and risk in cross-border disputes. He is an elected member of the American Law Institute and the International Academy of Comparative Law. He has been a visiting professor at Cornell Law School, the Institute of Comparative Law, Tokyo and the Université Libre de Bruxelles. He delivered a course at the Hague Academy of International Law in 2002 and contributed to the Academy's General Course in 2014. He is a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Private International Law and the Financial Markets Law Review. He has been extensively involved in law reform, nationally and internationally, in the areas of private international law and international civil procedure. He has given evidence to UK Parliamentary committees, and has advised the UK Government, the American Law Institute, the Financial Markets Law Committee of the Bank of England, the European Commission, and the Hague Conference on Private International Law. He is frequently involved in major transnational disputes before the English courts and in giving evidence on English law in foreign proceedings.

Prof Diego P. Fernández Arroyo
Diego P. Fernández Arroyo, born in Argentina, is a professor at Sciences Po Law School in Paris. He teaches subjects related to international dispute resolution, arbitration, conflict of laws, comparative law, and global governance. He is the director of the LLM in Transnational Arbitration & Dispute Settlement and co-director of Global Governance Studies. Professor Fernández Arroyo is a member of the Curatorium of the Hague Academy of International Law, an Associate of the Institut de droit international, a former President of the American Association of Private International Law (ASADIP), and the current Secretary-General of the International Academy of Comparative Law. He has been invited in a number of Universities of Europe, the Americas, Asia and Australia and he has been a Global Professor of NYU. Professor Fernández Arroyo is a member of the Argentinean Delegation before UNCITRAL (Working Group on Arbitration) since 2003. Professor Fernández Arroyo is actively involved in the practice of international arbitration as an independent arbitrator and an expert. He is a member of the ICSID panels of arbitrators and conciliators appointed by Argentina. He has developed several projects in the field of arbitration and international business law for international organisations, and has published several books and a number of articles in publications of more than 20 countries.

Prof Horatia Muir-Watt
Horatia Muir-Watt is Professor of law at Sciences Po Paris.

She is Director of the Revue critique de droit international privé and on the editorial board of various international law journals (Journal of Private International Law, European Review of Contract Law, Transnational legal Theory).

Her publications include Aspects économiques de droit international privé (RCADI, t307, 2005); Droit international privé, PUF, 2017 (4th edition) with Dominique Bureau; “Discours sur la méthode du droit international privé” (RCADI 2017). She is co-editor of a volume with Oxford University Press in 2014, Private international law as global governance. She is editor of a two-volume collection of academic materials on Private international law and Public law (Elgar 2016).

In the past year (2016-2017), articles include: « Conflicts Of Laws Unbounded: The Case For A Legal-Pluralist Revival » (2016) Transnational Legal Theory; “Theorizing Private International Law”, in The Oxford Handbook of the Theory of International Law. “Party autonomy in global context: The political economy of a self-constituting regime”, in Oxford Handbook of Political Economy (2017) ; “International arbitration: A Critical Private international law perspective”, Oxford Handbook of International Arbitration (2017) ; “Comparative law and Globalization”, Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law (2017) ; “Foreign life-forms and law and the ethic of difference (a view from private international law)”, Hommage for G.H. Samuel, Journal of Comp. Law (2017) ; “Private International Law’s Shadow Contribution to the Question of Informal Transnational Authority”, Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies (2017, vol 25).

She was elected in 2013 to the Institute of International Law.

The Hon Diana Bryant AO QC
Diana Bryant was Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia from 2004 to October 2017. Immediately prior to her appointment as Chief Justice of the Family Court, she was the inaugural Chief Federal Magistrate of the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia (now the Federal Circuit Court of Australia) from 2000–2004, having guided the establishment and growth of that court in its first four years.

Before her appointment to the Bench, Chief Justice Bryant practised as a family lawyer with a national firm in Perth and spent 10 years at the Victorian Bar, becoming a Queen’s Counsel in 1997.

Her international work includes many appellate decisions regarding Hague Convention cases and she was one of the two International Hague Network Judges for Australia from 2009 to 2017. She is currently chairing a working group for the Hague Permanent Bureau developing a Guide to Good Practice in relation to Article 13(1)(b) of the Child Abduction Convention. (the ‘grave risk’ exception) She is also co-chair of the Association of International Family Judges and a member of the International Advisory Committee for the Singapore Family Justice Courts.

In 2018 she will be ‘Judge in Residence‘ at Melbourne University Law School and she is a member of the International Association of Child Law Researchers. She is currently chairing the National Judicial College of Australia family violence training for the Australian judiciary and is a facilitator in the delivery of the program.

Prof Cristina González Beilfuss
Cristina González Beilfuss is a Full Professor of Private international and comparative law at the University of Barcelona (Spain), who specializes in International and comparative Family law. She has extensively published in the field and acts as an expert for the Hague Conference on Private international law in the field of international family agreements and parentage. She is an Associate Member of the International Academy of Comparative law and a member of the Organising Committee of the Commission on European Family law that drafts the European Principles on Family lawy on the basis of extensive comparative studies. She is presently preparing a course for the Hague Academy of International law on the topic “Party autonomy in International Family law”.

Since 2011 to 2017 she was seconded to the Spanish Judicial School and closely cooperated with the European Judicial Training Network (EJTN), where she coordinated all activities related to the training of European judges and prosecutors in the field of civil cooperation. She also acted as a national contact point in the European Judicial network (EJN) and in Iberrred with the mission of facilitating the practical operation of Civil law instruments.

You can reach Cristina at cgonzalezb@ub.edu.

Ms Anne-Marie Hutchinson OBE, QC (Hon)
Anne-Marie Hutchinson OBE, QC (Hon) is a Family Law Solicitor and Partner at Dawson Cornwell. She specialises in all aspects of domestic and international family law and the international movement of children. She has particular expertise in international custody disputes, child abduction (Hague and non-Hague), the EU Regulation on jurisdiction, relocations, children’s law private and public, divorce and jurisdictional disputes, forced marriage, international adoption and surrogacy.

She was awarded the inaugural UNICEF Child Rights Lawyer award in 1999. She received an OBE for her services to international child abduction and adoption in 2002. In 2004 she was selected as Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year for her work with the victims of forced marriage. In 2010 she received the IBA Outstanding International Woman Lawyer Award. In 2012 she was awarded an “Albert” by the Albert Kennedy Trust in recognition of her work on an international level in defending the human rights of LGBT people, she was also awarded the Jordans International Family Lawyer of the Year award. She received the prestigious IAFL President’s Medal in 2014. In 2016 Anne-Marie was appointed Queens Counsel honoris causa and received an honorary doctorate of laws from the University of Leeds.

Anne-Marie is Chair of the Board of Trustees of Reunite: International Child Abduction Centre and she is the Parliamentarian of the IAFL. She is a Founding Fellow of the International Surrogacy Forum and also the UK LGBT Family Law Institute. She is a member of the National Commission on Forced Marriage at the House of Lords and an appointed panel member of the Government Review on Sharia Law in England and Wales.

Prof Nieve Rubaja
Nieve Rubaja is a Private International Law Professor at the University of Buenos Aires. She has been teaching in the field of Private International Law since 1999 and in Family International Law since 2010. She has also been a visiting lecturer at several national and international universities both in undergraduate and graduate courses.

She is a researcher at the University of Buenos Aires. Her research focuses on the Family International Law area and access to justice.

She holds a postgraduate degree in Family Law from the University of Buenos Aires (2004) and is currently a candidate to the PhD in Private International Law at the same School of Law.

Her interests are in International Child Abduction, Maintenance Obligations, International Adoption and International Surrogacy Arrangements. Apart from teaching, she has extensively published in these fields. She has been a speaker at several conferences and congresses both in Argentina and abroad. In 2012 her first book “Private International Family Law, from the Argentinean legal system perspective” was published by Thomson Reuters publishing house (ISBN 978-950-20-2370-0).

Professor Rubaja is a member of the “Experts' Group on Recognition and Enforcement of Voluntary Cross-Border Agreements in international child disputes” and she is the Argentinean representative at the "Experts´ Group on Parentage” held by the HCCH.

She is a Latin American correspondent for INCADAT (www.incadat.com) and assists the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean of the HCCH in the production of Summaries for Latin American cases by selecting them and coordinating a group of students who produce the corresponding summaries.

She is a member of the American Association of Private International Law (ASADIP), the Argentinean Association of International Law (ASDI) and the Lawyers Bar Association of Buenos Aires.

Prof María Mercedes Albornoz
María Mercedes Albornoz is a Researcher Professor at Center for Research and Teaching in Economics (Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas, CIDE), located in Mexico City.

Her research and teaching fields focus on Private International Law, and on the crossroads of Technologies and Law. She specializes in International Contracts, including Dispute Resolution, and E-Commerce. Many of her academic publications tackle different issues of international contracts and the law applicable to them, as well as Alternative Dispute Resolution mechanisms and the challenges posed by Online Dispute Resolution proceedings. Besides, she is involved in the study of International Surrogacy Arrangements and the protection of childre n born thereof.

Professor Albornoz cooperates with the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs as an External Advisor in Private International Law. In this capacity, she is a member of the Hague Conference on Private International Law’s Experts’ Group on Parentage / Surrogacy.

She graduated in Law at the National University of Litoral in Santa Fe, in her country of origin, Argentina. Then, she obtained a Master Degree in Private International Law and International Commerce Law, and a PhD in Law, both at Université de Paris II, in Paris, France.

Professor Albornoz is a member of Mexico’s National System of Researchers. She has given many lectures and participated in discussion panels in different countries. Moreover, she belongs to several academic associations, like the American Association of Private International Law, ASADIP, and the Mexican Academy of Private International and Comparative Law, AMEDIP.

Sir William Blair
Sir William Blair is a former High Court Judge for England and Wales, whose work included the Financial List and the Standing International Forum of Commercial Courts. He is President of the Board of Appeal of the European Supervisory Authorities, which is the framework for financial supervision in the European Union, and a Fellow Academic Member of the European Banking Institute. He was the Judge in Charge of the Commercial Court in London from 2016 to 2017. In 2018, he has sat as a Deputy Judge of the Court of First Instance of the High Court of Hong Kong. He is a member of London's Financial Markets Law Committee, as well as the Chair of the Monetary Law Committee of the International Law Association, which brings together leading professionals in the financial law field. Sir William has written widely in the field of financial law, most recently co-editing Banks and Financial Crime published by the Oxford University Press in 2017.

He became Professor of Financial Law and Ethics at Queen Mary University of London in 2017, based at the Centre for Commercial law Studies. He also holds Visiting Professorships at the London School of Economics (LSE), Peking University Law School (PKU) and East China University of Political Science and Law (ECUPL), and is a Fellow of the Oxford University Commercial Law Centre. He graduated from Oxford University and practised at the English Bar, where he specialised in the law of domestic and international banking and finance. He was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1994, Chairman of the Commercial Bar Association between 2003 and 2005, and is a Judge of the Qatar International Court. He is a Member of P.R.I.M.E. Finance's Advisory Board and its Panel of Experts. He chairs the Law and Ethics in Finance Project, an informal group concerned with standards in the financial sector. He became an Associate Member of London barristers' chambers 3 Verulam Buildings in December 2017.

Prof Francisco J. Garcimartín
Francisco is a Chair Professor of Private International Law at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. He graduated in Law at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (1987) and earned his Ph.D in Law at the aforementioned University (1991). His main fields of expertise are focused on International transactions, cross-border insolvency, international litigation as well as cross-border company law.

Francisco has represented the Spanish government as national expert in different international organizations, such as UNIDROIT, UNCITRAL, The Hague Conference on Private International Law or the Council of the European Union. He is a Consultant at Linklaters Madrid.

Mr David Goddard QC
David is one of New Zealand’s leading barristers. He specialises in appellate advocacy, appearing frequently before the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court. His more than 30 appearances in the Supreme Court include major public law and Treaty of Waitangi cases, in many of which he was counsel for the New Zealand Government. His other areas of particular expertise include company law, competition law and regulation, contract law, equity and trusts, and private international law.

David also acts as an arbitrator in commercial disputes. In 2011 David was appointed as a member of the Commonwealth Secretariat Arbitral Tribunal.

David has an extensive involvement in law reform in New Zealand and overseas. He advises ministers and government agencies on a wide range of policy issues. He has represented New Zealand in bilateral and multilateral negotiations. He has drafted legislation and treaties in a number of fields including company law, contract law, private international law, and regulation of cross-border commercial activity.

David is currently chairing the HCCH Judgments Project Special Commission. He was a drafting committee member and Vice-President of the Diplomatic Conference that adopted the Choice of Court Convention in 2003. David was one of the architects of the trans-Tasman regime for service of court proceedings and enforcement of judgments, which came into force in 2013.

Prof José A. Moreno Rodríguez
José A. Moreno Rodríguez
LL.M Harvard, 1993, having received an excellent qualification in his thesis submitted to Professor Emeritus Arthur Taylor von Mehren. Doctor in Law (Summa Cum Laude) at the National University of Asunción. Member of the Working Group and Delegate before the Special Commission of The Hague Conference on PIL regarding The Hague Principles on International Contracts. Member of the Governing Council of UNIDROIT and Chair of the Working Group on Agricultural Land and Investment Contracts. Member of the Inter-American Juridical Committee of the Organization of American States and Reporter of the OAS Guide on International Contracts. Former President of the American Association of Private International Law. President of the Centro de Estudios de Derecho, Economía y Política (www.cedep.org.py) Reporter for the International Academy of Comparative Law at the Congress of Fukuoka 2018 in matters related to the UNIDROIT Principles of International Contracts. Delegate before UNCITRAL at its 39th session. Delegate before the CIDIP VII Private International Conference of the Organization of the American States. Member of the International Chamber of Commerce Court of Arbitration. Member of Annulment Committees of the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes. Professor and Visiting Professor of several universities, among them, Heidelberg and Paris II. Author and co-author of books and articles published in Paraguay, Argentina, Brazil, Perú, Colombia, México, the United States, China, Spain, and France on International Contracts and Commercial law, Investment Law, Arbitration, Financial Law, etc. Director of Altra (www.altralegal.com) Personal site: www.jmoreno.info.

Mr Bill Fritzlen
William Fritzlen is a Supervisory Attorney in Office of Legal Affairs for Overseas Citizens Services at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs. He is an expert on matters related to international judicial cooperation including the Hague Apostille, Service and Evidence Conventions, country-specific procedures for judicial assistance, and assists federal agencies involved in international civil and criminal litigation. He has worked on the development of regulations and guidance concerning citizen services, passports and nationality, intercountry adoption and advised on questions related to the acquisition and loss of U.S. citizenship. Mr. Fritzlen is an expert on notarial law and serves as the Department’s liaison with the Notary Public Administrators Section of the National Association of Secretaries of State. He was seconded by the Department of State to work with the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private International Law in drafting of its publication, Apostille Handbook, A Handbook on the Practical Operation of the Apostille Convention. He has represented the United States at bilateral and multilateral meetings with foreign governments and has been awarded on multiple occasions with the Department of State’s Superior Honor Award, Meritorious Honor Award and Franklin Award. He holds a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, from Loyola University Chicago, a master’s degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison, and a law degree from the University of Missouri – Columbia School of Law.

Prof Feng Guo
Prof. Feng Guo, PHD (WHU), Dean and Professor of Law at Wuhan University Law school, Vice chairman of China Economic Law Association, China Securities Law Association, Standing Councilor of China Commercial Law Association. His main research interests include company law, bank law and commercial law. He has published more than 100 articles in Chinese journals, and is the author of the books: Comparative Research on the Modern Company Capital System (Wuhan University Press), Theory and practice of financial law in the social change perspective (Beijing University Press), etc. He is an arbitrator of the China International Trade Arbitration Commission, the Wuhan Arbitration Commission, and was awarded with the prize of Excellent Teacher by Baoshan Iron and Steel Education Fund.

Prof Eugenio Hernández-Bretón
Head of the Department of Private International Law, and Director of the Masters Program on Private International Law and Comparative Law at the School of Law of Universidad Central de Venezuela; Dean of the School of Law and Political Sciences of Universidad Monteávila, Caracas; President of the Advisory Council of the American Association of Private International Law; Titular Member of the International Academy of Comparative Law; Former President of the Academy of Political and Social Sciences of Venezuela; Foreign Correspondent Member of the Academy of Moral and Social Sciences of Peru, and of the Academy of Jurisprudence of Paraguay; Member of the Scientific Board of the Revista Chilena de Derecho Internacional Privado; Doctor iuris utriusque, University of Heidelberg; Legum Magister, University of Tübingen; Master of Laws, Columbia University, New York; Abogado, Andrés Bello Catholic University, Caracas; Counsel for International Litigation and Arbitration. Author of three books and more than 120 law review articles and essays.

Prof Burkhard Hess
Burkhard Hess, born in Worms (Germany) in 1961, became founding and executive director of the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law in September 2012. He studied law at the Universities of Würzburg, Lausanne and Munich and graduated in Munich in 1990. After being granted Venia Legendi in civil law, civil procedure, private international law, European law and public international law in 1996, he held chairs at the Universities of Tübingen and Heidelberg. He was a guest professor in Beijing, in Paris (Sorbonne) and in Georgetown, and a scholar-in-residence at the Center for Transnational Law at the New York University. He served as a part-time judge at the Court of Appeal of Karlsruhe. Professor Hess often acts as an expert and advisor to the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of Europe and national governments. He has evaluated the European Insolvency Regulation and the Brussels I Regulation. He has also contributed to the drafting of the proposal for the Regulation on the European Attachment of Bank Accounts. He is the author of various books on German and European civil procedural law as well as co-editor of IPRax and of Kölner Kommentar zum Kapitalanleger-Musterverfahrensgesetz. He is Chairman of the ILA Committee on the Protection of Privacy in Private International and Procedural Law. In March 2015, the University of Ghent awarded Professor Hess a doctor honoris causa; in May 2016, the University of Thessaloniki.

Prof Peter Zablud AM, RFD
Peter Zablud is an Australian lawyer, notary and academic. He has written several textbooks, including the authoritative reference work “Principles of Notarial Practice”, which has been sold in 21 countries and is now in its second edition. His professional clientele include listed public companies, fund managers and international investors and a range of public entities, corporations and individuals who have transactions and interests outside Australia.

As an academic, Professor Zablud is the Director of Notarial Studies at Victoria University, Melbourne where he designed and is responsible for the presentation of the Professional Course in Notarial Practice - the pre-eminent qualification of notaries in Australia and one of the outstanding courses of education of its kind in the common law world. He regularly presents Papers on the Authentication of Documents for Cross-border Purposes at international conferences, including keynote addresses at the 2009, 2012 and 2016 HCCH Apostille Convention Special Commission meetings.

Peter is a Distinguished Fellow of The Australia and New Zealand College of Notaries and is an Executive Member and past-Chairman of the College’s Board of Governors. He holds a Reserve Force Decoration (RFD) and Australia’s National Medal for service as an officer in the Australian Army Reserve. In January 2017, Peter Zablud was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in recognition of his significant service to the law and to legal standards and education particularly in the field of notarial studies.

Prof Richard Frimpong Oppong
Professor Richard Frimpong Oppong is an Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, Thompson Rivers University in British Columbia, Canada. He is a Fellow of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is also a Member of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists. He was educated at the University of Ghana, Ghana School of Law, University of Cambridge, Harvard Law School and the University of British Columbia. He completed his Post-doctoral studies at the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University.

Professor Oppong’s principal research interests are in private international law, regional economic integration and international dispute settlement, with a special focus on Africa. He has published widely on these subjects, including his award-winning book: Private International Law in Commonwealth Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2013).

In 2012, he held the post of Director of Studies (Private International Law) at The Hague Academy of International Law. He was also a member of the Working Group of The Hague Conference on Private International Law that developed The Hague Principles on Choice of Law in International Commercial Contracts 2015. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the Yearbook of Private International Law.

His latest writings include: ‘Foreign Same-Sex Marriages Before Commonwealth African Courts’ (2017) 18 Yearbook of Private International Law 36-60, and ‘Damages for Breach and Interpretation of Jurisdiction Agreements in Common Law Canada’ (2017) 95 Canadian Bar Review 383-412.

Prof Yuko Nishitani
Yuko Nishitani is Professor of International Private and Business Law at Kyoto University in Japan since 2015. Prior to this, she held a chair at Tohoku University (1997-2007) and Kyushu University (2011-2015). She was a Visiting Professor at Duke University, Tel Aviv, Louvain-la-Neuve and Brescia, and a Director of Studies (2004) and Lecturer (2011) at the Hague Academy of International Law. Since 2017, she is a Member of the Curatorium of the Hague Academy.

After completing her studies at Kyoto University, she did research in Hamburg and Heidelberg (1994-1997). She received a PhD from the University of Heidelberg in 1998 with a thesis „Mancini und die Parteiautonomie im Internationalen Privatrecht“, which was awarded the Serick Preis. She further did research in Milan and Florence (1999-2000), New York (2003-2004), Paris (2007-2008) and Hamburg (2009-2011). She also served as a Senior Legal Officer on Secondment at the Permanent Bureau of the HCCH (2004). She has been a Member of several Legislative Committees in Japan and represented the Japanese Government in several HCCH projects, i.e., the Hague Principles on Choice of Law in International Commercial Contracts, the Judgments Project, and the Parentage and Surrogacy Project.

Her areas of interest are private international law, international business law, international civil procedure law, comparative law, and family and succession law. She is currently doing research on several topics, particularly on globalization and legal pluralism, the objectives and meaning of uniform law, cultural identity of individuals in private international family law, and the autonomy of children in family law.

Justice Fausto Pocar
Judge Fausto Pocar is Professor Emeritus of International Law at the University of Milan, where he also served as Dean and Vice-Rector.

He served as a Delegate on many sessions and special commissions of the Hague Conference on PIL as of 1971, and was a Co-rapporteur of the Special Commission on Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments (1994-1999) and the Chairman of the Special Commission on Maintenance Obligations (2001-2005). Within the EU, he served as Rapporteur of the revision of the Brussels Convention on Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgements (1996-1999), and of the revised parallel Lugano Convention adopted in 2007. He was a member of the Italian Commission entrusted with the reform of Italian PIL, enacted 1995. As of its foundation (1964), he was a member of the editorial board of the main Italian journal of private international law (Rivista di diritto internazionale privato e processuale), and is its editor-in-chief as of 1986.

He has been an Appeals Judge of the ICTY (2000-2017), where he also served as Vice-President (2003-2005) and President (2005-2008). During the same years, he was an Appeals Judge (and President of the Appeals Chamber 2005-2008) of the ICTR until its closing (2015). He was appointed ad hoc Judge of the ICJ in the cases Belgium v. Switzerland (2011) and Ukraine v. Russian Federation (2017), where he is currently sitting. A Dr h.c. (Antwerp and Buenos Aires), Judge Pocar has been a visiting lecturer in many Italian and foreign universities, and is the author of hundreds of publications in private and public international law. He has lectured at the Hague Academy of International Law and is a member of the bureau of the Institut de droit international. He was awarded the Great Cross Knighthood by the President of the Italian Republic (2014).

Prof Linda Silberman
Linda Silberman is the Charles D. Ashley Professor of Law at New York University and the Co-director of NYU’s Center for Transnational Litigation, Arbitration, and Commercial Law. Professor Silberman also holds an Honorary Professorship at Queen Mary University of London in the Centre for Commercial Law Studies. She is a member of the Academic Council of the Institute of Transnational Arbitration, a Member of the U.S. Department of State Advisory Committee on Private International Law, and a Member of the Singapore Family Justice Courts International Advisory Council. Professor Silberman has served on numerous U.S. State Department delegations to the Hague Conference on the operation of the 1980 Abduction and 1996 Child Protection Conventions.

Professor Silberman has served as an Adviser on three different projects of the American Law Institute (ALI): the Restatement Third of the US Law on International Commercial Arbitration, the Restatement Fourth of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States, and the Restatement Third on Conflict of Laws. Previously, she was co-reporter for the ALI’s Project on Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments: Analysis and Proposed Federal Statute.

Professor Silberman teaches and writes in the areas of Civil Procedure, Conflict of Laws, Comparative Procedure, International Litigation, International Arbitration, and International Child Abduction. She also serves as a litigation and arbitration consultant and/or expert in her areas of expertise. She is the co-author of a leading Civil Procedure casebook, “Civil Procedure: Theory and Practice”, now in its 5th edition, and of a Comparative Procedure teaching book, “Civil Litigation in Comparative Context”, now in a 2nd edition. She is the 2018 recipient of the “Leonard J. Theberge Award for Private International Law” from the ABA Section on International Law. Professor Silberman has been invited to give the general course on Private International Law at the Hague Academy of International Law in 2020.

Prof Nadia de Araujo
Nadia de Araujo graduated from the Rio de Janeiro State University Law School (Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro) in 1981, with a bachelor of laws degree (Legum baccalaureus or LL.B.). She received a Masters in Comparative Law (M.C.L.) degree from the George Washington University in 1983, and a Doctorate of Juridical Science (scientiae juridical doctor or S.J.D.) degree in International Law from the University of São Paulo Law School (Universidade de São Paulo) in 1996.

From 1984 to 2012, Nadia served as a Public Prosecutor for the State of Rio de Janeiro. She currently practices law as a founding partner of the law firm of Nadia de Araujo Advogados where her work consists primarily of cases dealing with conflict of laws, jurisdiction, and international legal co-operation. She also teaches and lectures on international law. She has been a member of the Law Faculty at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro) since 1985, having become a fully tenured professor in 2000. Her research focuses on conflict of laws, with particular emphasis on issues of international jurisdiction and international legal co-operation. She is the author of several books and academic articles, among which is “Private International Law: Brazilian Theory and Practice,” currently in its seventh edition. Nadia has been a visiting scholar in the United States at the University of Arizona Law School, Tucson (1993) as well as at the University of Baltimore Law School (2007). In 2008, she lectured as a visiting professor at the University of Florida's Levin College of Law. She also taught at The Hague Academy of International Law, in the Netherlands, in the summer of 2010.

Nadia has represented the Brazilian government as a Brazilian Delegate to the Special Commission on Child Maintenance and the Working Group on Applicable Law at The Hague Conference on Private International Law from 2004 to 2007. She was a Brazilian Delegate to the XXI Diplomatic Conference on The Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance and its Protocol in 2007 and again acted as a Brazilian Delegate to the Special Commission on International Civil Co-operation at the Hague Conference on Private International Law in 2009. She is currently serving as a member of the Brazilian Delegation in the negotiations of the Judgments Project at The Hague Conference on Private International Law. She is also serving on the Experts’ Group on Recognition and Enforcement of Agreements in International Child Disputes, having been appointed by the Secretariat The Hague Conference on Private International Law.

Nadia is a current Member of the Brazilian National Group of the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the Permanent Review Court of the Mercosur.

Deputy Director-General Xiaomei Guo
Master, Private International Law, Renmin University of China
Work Experiences
2017.03 - Deputy Director-General, Department of Treaty and Law, MFA
2013--2017.03 Counsellor, Department of Treaty and Law, MFA
2009--2013 Counsellor, Permanent Mission of China to the United Nation
2000-2009 Third Secretary, Deputy Director, Director, Department of Treaty and Law, MFA
1999-2000 Third Secretary, Office of the Commissioner of MFA in Macao SAR
1997-1999 Attache,Third Secretary, Chinese Representative Office of Sino-Portuguese Joint Liaison Group
1995-1997 Staff, Attache, Department of Treaty and Law, MFA