Nadja Al Kanawati is a counsel in the Litigation/Controversy Department and a member of the International Arbitration Practice Group.

Ms. Al Kanawati has experience of arbitrations under a variety of institutional and ad hoc rules, including the ICC, Swiss and AAA/ICDR rules.

Prior to joining WilmerHale, Ms. Al Kanawati worked as an associate in the dispute resolution practice of a leading Swiss law firm.

Professional Activities

Ms. Al Kanawati is the Swiss Arbitration Association (ASA) below 40 Group’s International co-chair. She also served as the regional representative of the German Arbitration Institute (DIS) below 40 Group in London from 2020-2023. Additionally, she is a member of a number of arbitration practitioner groups, including Young International Council for Commercial Arbitration, ICC Young Arbitrators Forum, Young International Arbitration Group (LCIA – YIAG) and ArbitralWomen.

Ms. Al Kanawati co-teaches a course on international commercial arbitration in the master’s program of the Université Catholique de Lille.


  • Representing a Middle Eastern state entity in a consolidated LCIA dispute against UK-domiciled international energy company relating to the termination of two Production Sharing Contracts in the Middle Eastern state of our client. Seated in London, subject to English law. 
  • Representing a US mining consortium in an arbitration against an African company and its US parent company relating to shipping rights allegedly transferred to the former by a West African State.
  • Representing a supplier of refractory products in an AAA arbitration against a procurement logistics provider and a steel services company relating to a contract which could not be performed as a result of sanctions against a Central American state.


  • Selected for recognition as a leading arbitration practitioner in the 2024 edition of Who's Who Legal: Arbitration.

Insights & News


  • Education

    • LLM, Columbia Law School, 2020

      James Kent Scholar, Fulbright Scholar, Co-Chair, Columbia Arbitration Day, Parker School Certificate for Achievement in International and Comparative Law
    • MLaw, University of Fribourg, 2014

      summa cum laude Co-Founder and Editor in Chief, Quid? Fribourg Law Review
    • BLaw, Bilingual (German / French), University of Fribourg, 2012

      magna cum laude
  • Admissions

    • Switzerland

    • New York

  • Languages

    • English

    • German

    • French

    • Italian



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