My Publications & Research 


  1. Emilia Onyema (ed) Rethinking the Role of African National Courts in Arbitration, Kluwer Law International, 2018, 417 pages.
  2. Emilia Onyema (ed), The Transformation of Arbitration in Africa: The Role of Arbitral Institutions, Kluwer Law International, 2016, 209 pages.
  3. Emilia Onyema, International Commercial Arbitration and the Arbitrator’s Contract, Routledge Cavendish, 2010, 257 pages.

Articles in Refereed Journals

  1. Emilia Onyema, “African Participation in the ICSID System: Appointment and Disqualification of Arbitrators”, ICSID Review – Foreign Investment Law Journal (2020).
  2. Emilia Onyema, “Reimagining the Framework for resolving Intra-African Commercial Disputes in the Context of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement”, World Trade Review (2019), pp 1-25.
  3. Emilia Onyema, “Regional Arbitration Institution for ECOWAS: Lessons from OHADA Common Court of Justice and Arbitration” (2014) Int’l ALR Issue 5, pp 99-111.
  4. Emilia Onyema, “The Multi-door Court House (MDC) Scheme in Nigeria: a case study of the Lagos MDC”, (2013) vol 7 No 2 Apogee Journal of Business, Property & Constitutional Law, pp 96-129.
  5. Onyema, “The New Ghana ADR Act 2010: A Critical Overview”, (2012) vol 28 no 1, Arbitration International”, pp 101-124.
  6. Emilia Onyema, “A critique of the New 2009 Arbitration Law of Lagos State”, (2010) vol 2 no 5, Apogee Journal of Business, Property & Constitutional Law, pp 1-24.
  7. Emilia Onyema, ‘Enforcement of Arbitral Awards in Sub-Sahara Africa’, (2010) vol 26 no 1, Arbitration International, pp 115-138 – translated into Chinese for a Chinese Journal in 2010.
  8. Emilia Onyema, ‘The doctrine of Separability under Nigerian Law’, (2009) vol 1 no 1, Apogee Journal of Business, Property & Constitutional Law, pp 65-79.
  9. Emilia Onyema, ‘Arbitration under the Ohada Regime’, (2008), vol 11 no 6, International Arbitration Law Review, pp 205-218.
  10. Emilia Onyema, ‘Empirically Determined Factors in Appointing Arbitrators in International Commercial Arbitration’, (2007) vol 73 no.2, Arbitration 199 – 207.
  11. Emilia Onyema, ‘The Role of the International Arbitral tribunal Secretary’, Vindobona Journal, (2005) vol 9 no 1, pp 99-110.
  12. Emilia Onyema, ‘Selection of Arbitrators in International Commercial Arbitration’, (2005) vol 8 no 2, International Arbitration Law Review, pp 45-54.
  13. Emilia Onyema, ‘Power Shift in International Commercial Arbitration Proceedings’, (2004) vol 14 nos1&2, Caribbean Law Review, pp 62-77.
  14. Emilia Onyema, ‘Drafting an Effective Arbitration Agreement in International Commercial Contracts’, (2003) vol 7 no 2, Vindobona Journal, pp 277- 286.
  15. Emilia Onyema, ‘The Use of Med-Arb in International Commercial Dispute Resolution’, (2001) vol 12 no 3-4, American Review of International Arbitration, pp 411- 423.

Chapters in Books/collections

  1. Emilia Onyema, “OHADA Arbitration and Common Law African Countries”, in A. Ngwanza (ed), Vingt ans d’arbitrage OHADA: bilan et perspectives, LexisNexis, 2019, pages 427-441.
  2. Onyema E, “Shifts in Dispute Resolution Processes of West African States” in Moscati A, Roberts M, & Palmer M (eds) Comparative Dispute Resolution Research Handbook (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2020).
  3. Onyema E, “The Role of African Courts and Judges in Arbitration” in Onyema E (ed) Rethinking the Role of African National Courts in Arbitration, Kluwer Law International (Wolters Kluwer, 2018)
  4. Onyema E, “The Jurisdictional Tensions Between Domestic Courts and Arbitral Tribunals” in Menaker, Andrea (ed) International Arbitration and the Rule of Law: Contribution and Conformity, ICCA Congress Series No 19, Kluwer (2017) pp 481-500
  5. Onyema E, “Arbitration Institutions in Africa” in Emilia Onyema (ed), The Transformation of Arbitration in Africa: The Role of Arbitral Institutions, Kluwer Law International (2016), pp 15-43.
  6. Onyema E, “Introduction” in Emilia Onyema (ed), The Transformation of Arbitration in Africa: The Role of Arbitral Institutions, Kluwer Law International (2016), pp 1-11.
  7. Onyema E, “Commentary on the Arbitration Rules of the Lagos Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration”, in Mistelis L. & Shore L. (eds), 3rd edition, World Arbitration Reporter, (2015) Juris Publishers, USA (2015).
  8. Onyema E, “International Arbitration in the West African States”, a chapter in Lise Bosman (ed) Practitioners’ Guide to Arbitration in Africa, Kluwer, 2013.
  9. Emilia Onyema & Oluwaseye O Ayinla, “Online Negotiation and Mediation” in E Azinge & C Ani (eds) Principles of Negotiation and Mediation, NIALS Publ, 2012, pp 96-140.
  10. Emilia Onyema, ‘Commentary on the arbitration rules of the Lagos Regional Centre for International Commercial Arbitration’, in L. Mistelis & L. Shore (eds), 2nd edition, World Arbitration Reporter, Juris Publishers, USA, 2010.
  11. Emilia Onyema, ‘Formalities of the Enforcement Procedure’ in Emmanuel Gaillard & Domenico Di Pietro (eds) Recognition and Enforcement of Arbitration Agreements and International Arbitral Awards – the New York Convention in Practice, (2008) Cameron May, pp 595 – 610.

Online publications

  1. Emilia Onyema, “Online Commentary on Articles 45 and 46 of the Vienna Convention on the International Sale of Goods, 1980” (CISG) available on
  2. Emilia Onyema, The Role of the International Arbitral tribunal Secretary’, (2005) vol 2 Issue 3 Transnational Dispute Management, available at

Other publications

  1. Emilia Onyema (2008), Introduction to International Commercial Arbitration, a workbook for the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, pp 1-77.

Some Papers Delivered at Conferences

  1. 10-12 March 2020: Organised and spoke at the 6th SOAS Arbitration in Africa on Legal Cultures and their impact on arbitration in Africa, Douala, Cameroon.
  2. 25-26 September 2019: Spoke at the UNCITRAL Intersessional Meeting on ISDS Reforms for African States, Conakry, Guinea (attended by about 250 people).
  3. 22-24 August 2019: Spoke at the 18th CBAr International Arbitration Conference in Brasilia on ‘Arbitration and interpretation of contracts involving state institutions. This conference was attended by 600 people.
  4. 10 June 2019: Spoke at the Mauritius Arbitration Week in Port Louis on ‘Mauritius as a dispute resolution seat for African investment disputes”. This conference was attended by about 200 people.
  5. 7 May 2019: panel presentation on London as a dispute resolution hub for international parties, Norton Rose Fulbright Offices with about 200 people in attendance. Panel starts the first London International Disputes Week events.
  6. 3 April 2019: Presentation of the SOAS Arbitration in Africa Survey at the first African Arbitration Association (AFAA) Arbitration conference at Radisson Blu, Kigali (attended by 260 people).
  7. 8 March 2019: Keynote speech on the SOAS Arbitration in Africa Survey 2018 at the fourth annual conference on Energy Arbitration and ADR in MENA and Africa Regions; CMS Law Offices, London (attended by 80 people).
  8. 9-11 December 2018: spoke on the attitude of English courts towards enforcement of arbitral awards under the New York Convention, Sharm El Sheikh CRCICA conference (attended by about 250 people).
  9. 29 November 2018: spoke on the interpretation of force majeure and hardship clauses in contracts by courts in English speaking African countries at the 38th Annual Conference of the ICC Institute of World Business in Paris (attended by about 150 people).
  10. 22-23 November 2018: I spoke on the role of arbitrators and arbitral institutions in promoting arbitration in Africa, at the Libya CICA conference in Tunis (attended by about 100 people).
  11. 25 October 2018: spoke on inclusive representation of Africans in International Arbitration: findings from our SOAS Arbitration survey 2018 at the CIArb Annual conference 2018, Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja (attended by about 300 people).
  12. 6 September 2018: spoke at the China-AALCO Exchange and Research Program on International Law on the topic, “Effective Dispute Settlement Mechanisms as a driver for achieving common prosperity” in Beijing. About 100 people were in attendance.
  13. 02 July 2018: Chaired a panel discussion on “The Global South in an Era of Shifting Geopolitics” hosted in the London offices of Wilmer Hale LLP. Attended by 75 people.
  14. 26-29 June 2018: Gave the lead paper, “Establishing a framework for Resolving Intra-African Commercial Disputes” at the 12th annual Nigerian Bar Association Section on Business Law conference, Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, Nigeria. The conference was attended by 900-1,000 lawyers.
  15. 14 June 2018: Invited to speak on “Actors of arbitration systems in Africa: focus on legal profession” at the first conference of AfricArb titled Arbitration in Africa: quo vadis? State of play, trends and perspectives” at Universitie Paris II, Sorbonne. The conference was attended by about 160 people made up of academic, researchers and practitioners.
  16. 2 May 2018: I launched the SOAS Arbitration in Africa Survey Report at Radisson Blu, Kigali.
  17. 2-4 May 2018: I organised the fourth SOAS Arbitration in Africa Conference on the role of arbitration practitioners in the development of arbitration in Africa. This conference was co-hosted by the Kigali International Arbitration Centre in Kigali.
  18. 6-7 March 2018: I chaired the panel on “Energy poverty in energy rich countries: a drive for disputes? At the 3rd annual conference on Energy Arbitration and Dispute Resolution in the Middle East and Africa, at the offices of Herbert Smith Freehills in London.
  19. 3-4 November 2017: 3rd Casablanca Arbitration Days in Casablanca: I chaired the panel on “The Recent Developments in African Arbitration Law and Practice”.
  20. 1-2 November 2017: 5th ICC Maghreb Arbitration Days in Tunis: I spoke on “The Role of the Judiciary in the Supervision of Arbitration”.
  21. 26-27 October 2017: LCIA Africa Users’ Council Symposium on International Arbitration in Abuja: I chaired the panel on the “Proliferation of Arbitration Centres in Africa: a gift or a curse?”
  22. 24 October 2017: 2nd ICAMA Arbitration Roundtable on “Growing and Sustaining Domestic Arbitration and ADR in Africa” at Abuja: spoke on the panel on “Growing and sustaining arbitration and ADR in Africa: historical background, policy objectives and issues”.
  23. 19-20 July 2017: CIArb Africa Regional Conference, Johannesburg, to speak on fees and cost on the panel discussing arbitral practice in civil and common law styles.
  24. 4-6 July 2017: UNCITRAL 50th Anniversary conference in Vienna (attend as participant)
  25. 22 June 2017: Africa Research Institute launch of their counterpoint on How ADR made a comeback in Nigeria’s court: Justice without lawyers: how Lagos fashioned an alternative to litigation. I spoke on the MDC scheme in Nigeria and access to justice.
  26. 9 June 2017: spoke on the panel that discussed, ‘Are arbitrators bringers of justice or dispute resolution service providers, and does it matter?’ in the 3rd SIA Alumni Conference on “Due Process Paranoia and Justice … Fairy tales or reality in international arbitration?” at Clyde & co LLP, London offices [about 60 people attended]
  27. 25 May 2017: spoke on my views of arbitration in Africa at the UNCITRAL/APAA Arbitration conference in Yaounde, Cameroon. [about 250 people attended]
  28. 27 April 2017: moderated a panel discussion on the education of the girl child in Nigeria at the SOAS Centenary celebration, Civic Centre, Lagos. [about 150 people attended]
  29. 4-5 April 2017: Organised and gave a welcome address at the SOAS/CRCICA 2017 Arbitration in Africa Conference on “The Role of African States and Governments in the Development of Arbitration in Africa” [about 150 people attended]
  30. 4-6 Dec 2016: Nairobi International Arbitration Centre Conference, Intercontinental Hotel, Nairobi. I spoke on the New York Convention and African states. [about 400 people attended].
  31. 23 Nov 2016: Law & Development in Africa annual seminar at Hunton & Williams LLP. I spoke on state immunity. [about 50 people attended].
  32. 19-20 Nov 2016: Cairo International Arbitration Conference, Sharm El Sheikh. I spoke on attitude of African courts towards arbitration. [about 178 people attended].
  33. 8 Nov 2016: I delivered a guest lecture at the Anglia Ruskin University School of Law (Cambridge) on the continued relevance of the state in arbitration.
  34. 2 Nov 2016: BIICL Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law & White & Case Rule of Law Seminar on Arbitration & the Rule of Law: Challenges, changes and contradictions. I spoke on Arbitration in Africa in the last 20 years. 70 people attended and event was chaired by Sir William Blair of the Commercial Court.
  35. 10-12 August 2016: Lead facilitator in arbitration training at the Ghana Arbitration Centre , Accra on the topic.
  36. 14-15 July 2016: African Commercial Law Foundation Inaugural Conference at Murray College, Cambridge University.
  37. 22-24 June 2016, SOAS/LCA Arbitration in Africa conference in Lagos, “Rethinking the role of courts and judges in supporting arbitration in Africa”. I spoke on the symbiotic relationship between judges and arbitrators. I co-organised this conference.
  38. 19-21 June, 1st ICC Africa Regional Arbitration Conference, Lagos: I spoke and moderated the panel: “Abuse of process in International Arbitration: role of Counsel”.
  39. 8-11 May, ICCA Mauritius conference: I spoke on the panel: “The interface between domestic courts and arbitral tribunals”.
  40. 13 April 2016: I delivered the Transnational Justice Lecture for the Transnational Justice Lecture Series by Georgetown University at Gray’s Inn, London. I spoke on OHADA Commercial law harmonisation tool and its impact on Africa.
  41. 31 March 2016: I moderated a half-day conference on “The urgency of Greater Participation by African Stakeholders in Arbitrations involving African Interests” hosted and co–organised by Shearman & Sterling LLP, London Offices, and ICC YAF: this event was attended by over 100 attendees and a summary of proceedings and photos was published in GAR.
  42. I was member of a panel discussion on investment arbitration in Africa; organised by Queen Mary, SciencePo Law School; ICDR Y&I, in Paris on 9 December 2015.
  43. I presented a paper on “Appointment of African arbitrators in ISDS: case study of ICSID at the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (UK) Nigerian branch 2015 annual conference at Transcorp Hilton Hotel Abuja, on 2-4 November 2015.
  44. I gave a keynote speech on educating the girl child at a charity event organised by The Girl Effect at Holiday Inn, Brent Cross, London, on 3 October 2015.
  45. Chaired a panel discussion on “Dispute Resolution in Africa” in honour of Judge Abdulqawi Yusuf, VP, ICJ at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, LLP, London on 02 September 2015
  46. I organised and presented a paper at the conference on “The role of arbitration institutions in the development of arbitration in Africa”, Africa Union Commission, Addis Ababa, 23 July 2015.
  47. Invited to speak on the Panel, “Doing Business in Africa” organised by the Eversheds Africa Law Institute at the London offices of Eversheds LLP on 24 June 2015.
  48. Invited to speak on the Panel, “Influences of local habits: what works and what doesn’t”, at the 30th Anniversary of the School of International Arbitration, QMUL on 22 April 2015 in the London offices of Norton Rose Fulbright LLP.
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