The International Bar Association is the world's foremost organization of lawyers, bar associations, law firms and law societies. Its membership includes more than 55,000 lawyers from over 160 countries, in addition to nearly 200 bar associations and legal societies.
The IBA is holding its annual conference this year in Vienna during the week of October 4. It expects to attract 6000 delegates from around the globe. The gathering provides the opportunity to discuss and hear from thought leaders on current topics in most legal practice areas and more generally on professional ethics, the future of the legal profession and -- on the 500 Anniversary of the Magna Carta -- the rule of law and human rights.
Jose Manuel Durao Barroso, the immediate Past President of the European Union, will deliver the keynote address. Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and former UN Special Representative on Business and Human Rights John Ruggie, will speak on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights at another plenary session.
As a practitioner of international arbitration, the conference provides a unique opportunity to meet with colleagues and attend seminars covering key developments in international dispute resolution. For instance, among these seminars are programs concerning: the balance between transparency and the costs of discovery in international arbitration; the influence of international arbitration on domestic litigation; the New York Convention: public policy as a ground for denying the enforcement of awards; the impact of sanctions on international arbitration; and the influence of IBA guidelines adopted to harmonize cultural differences in arbitration proceedings.
In attending the IBA conference this year, I look forward to meeting with colleagues from around the world and participating in the legal profession's work in advancing the rule of law in commercial relationships and to the larger needs of a just world order.