CDRC Vienna
:: The Organizers

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Founding Institutions


IBA       VIAC       elsa


The International Bar Association (IBA) is the world’s leading organization of international legal practitioners, bar associations and law societies with a membership of 55,000 individual lawyers and 206 bar associations and law societies spanning all continents.

The Vienna International Arbitral Centre (VIAC) is the premier international arbitration institution in Central and Eastern Europe. The new Vienna Mediation Rules of VIAC can be downloaded here

The European Law Students’ Association Austria (ELSA Austria) is the Austrian national group of ELSA International, the world’s largest independent law students’ association with a membership of 38,000 law students and young lawyers in 41 countries.


Association for the Organization and Promotion of the Vienna Mediation and Negotiation Competition
Registered Association Number 034757894
Stadiongasse 2, 1010 Wien   

 Competition Director

Claudia Winkler 

Claudia Winkler is a Negotiation Trainer specialized in training lawyers in the art and science of negotiating – with the other side and for more satisfaction with their own clients. An energetic and creative communicator she blends her variety of top legal educations with her international legal and business experience. Claudia received her Master’s and Doctor’s degree in European and International Law from the University of Linz and her LL.M. from Harvard Law School. Her professional experience reaches from law to government, non-for profit, start-up, university and international institutions. She has worked as the ADR development coordinator with the New York International Arbitration Center (NYIAC) during her time as a Fulbright scholar and is a licensed Mediator in New York. She has been the Director of the IBA-VIAC CDRC Vienna Mediation and Negotiation Competition in Vienna since its inception in 2015. As a trainer ( Claudia has worked with law firms, businesses, conferences and universities in the United States, Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia.


Organizing COMMITTEE

Alice Fremuth-Wolf (VIAC)

Alice Fremuth-Wolf

Alice Fremuth-Wolf is Deputy Secretary General of VIAC since January 2012. Having studied law at Vienna University (Mag. iur. 1995, Dr. iur. 2002), Utrecht University (1994) and the London School of Economics and Political Science (LL.M. 1998), she served as assistant professor at the Department of Civil Procedure Law at the Law Faculty of Vienna University. Before opening her own practice in 2004, she worked with major Austrian law firms and acted as party representative and arbitrator in international commercial arbitration cases. Alice Fremuth-Wolf has authored articles and books on arbitration and also serves as a lecturer for arbitration at the Law Faculty of Vienna University, where she was coach of the Vienna team for the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot from 2004-2009. She is also a qualified mediator and is a co-organizer of the CDRC IBA-VIAC Consensual Dispute Resolution Competition in Vienna.


Nikolaus Pitkowitz (VIAC)

Nikolaus Pitkowitz

Nikolaus Pitkowitz is founding partner and head of dispute resolution at Graf & Pitkowitz, Vienna and Vice-President of VIAC. He holds law degrees from University of Vienna (JD and PhD) and University of Sankt Gallen, Switzerland (MBL) and is also qualified and certified as a Mediator. Dr. Pitkowitz has been practising law since 1985. His practice, which has always been very international with a strong focus on CEE, initially mainly comprised trans­actional work in the fields of Real Estate and M&A and soon expanded to international dispute resolution. Nikolaus Pitkowitz is considered one of the preeminent Austrian dispute resolution practitioners.


Jawad Sarwana (IBA)

Jawad Sarwana

Jawad Sarwana is an advocate in the Supreme Court of Pakistan, a practicing mediator, and a partner at Abraham & Sarwana. He is a mediator on CEDR’s Global Panel and mediates disputes in Pakistan and abroad.  He is Co-Chair of the IBA Mediation Committee and co-founder of the CDRC IBA and VIAC Mediation and Negotiation Competition, Vienna. He co-authored the mediation problem for CDRC in its inaugural year transforming the VIS Arbitration Moot Problem into a mediation case. He is a member of the IMI Task Force to develop best practice guidelines for mediator training and co-chairs the Mediation Trainings Committee of Pakistan Mediators’ Association. He is part of the Working Group on the Competition Problems for the 12th ICC International Commercial Mediation Competition, Paris and has judged the 9th, 10th and 11th editions of the Competition.  He has authored the chapter “Making the First Offer” published in the IBA Mediation Technique Handbook and co-authored the ICC publication “Mediation Practice: 8 Cultures, 16 Cases, 128 Creative Solutions” edited by Greg Bond; and ABA Publication, “Stories Global Mediators Tell.”  He is a Star Wars fan and believes that the true nature of the Force lies in mediation and not midi-chlorians.


Jil Ahdab (IBA)

Jil Ahdab

Jalal El Ahdab (Jil Ahdab)‘s practice covers international business law, notably with the Arab world and Europe, and more specifically in the field of international ADR’s. The type of business disputes his practice includes relates to the construction industry, to corporate matters and to trade in various types of commodities, telecom markets, port concessions and involves the following geographical areas: Europe, Africa Asia and most importantly the Middle East. In both arbitration and mediation, he possesses a large knowledge of institutional rules, including ICSID, ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL, VIAC, DIAC, CRCICA and CAS Rules. In those disputes, he acts both as a counsel and as an arbitrator (sole arbitrator, co-arbitrator and chairman). He has also acted as a mediator and a counsel in mediations. He has at last participated to the drafting of various sets of mediation rules from various Arab Centers.

Dr. Ahdab is a member of the ICC International Court of Arbitration. He is chair of the Paris Chapter of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators and Lebanon’s Representative at the UNCITRAL (Vienna/NY). He is currently the Co-Chair of the IBA Mediation Committee and well acquainted with the IBA Investor-State Mediation Rules.