March 2, 2023

Fenwick Elliott signs the Equal Representation in Adjudication Pledge

Fenwick Elliott has signed the Adjudication Society’s Equal Representation in Adjudication Pledge, committing the firm to providing equal opportunity for women to act as adjudicators.

Firms wishing to sign the pledge can do so here.

Alongside the pledge, the Society has also established the Women in Adjudication Group, to promote women in adjudication, provide training, and collect data for a greater understanding of why women’s representation amongst adjudicators is so low. The Pledge and Working Group were launched jointly by the Adjudication Society on Tuesday 28 February.

Fenwick Elliott senior partner Simon Tolson comments: “We are delighted to support this critical initiative which aims to provide greater opportunity for women in adjudication, and address a longstanding imbalance in the industry. We would urge any firm working in construction disputes to sign the pledge and support the Adjudication Society’s ambitions.”

Women currently make up less than 8% of all construction adjudicators in the UK. The Adjudication Pledge sets out a number of steps to address this, including to ensure that, wherever possible:

  • committees, governing bodies and conference panels in the field of adjudication include a fair representation of women;
  • lists of potential adjudicators provided to or considered by parties, legal representatives (including in-house counsel) or otherwise include a fair representation of female candidates;
  • Adjudicator Nominating Bodies (ANBs) include a fair representation of female candidates on their rosters and lists of potential adjudicator appointees, where maintained by them;
  • where they have the power to do so, legal representatives, adjudicators, representatives of corporates and ANBs will, when appointing adjudicators, advance equality of opportunity between male adjudicators and female adjudicators;
  • gender characteristic statistics for appointments are collated and made publicly available by the ANBs and any other institutions collating data on adjudication; and
  • senior and experienced adjudication practitioners support, mentor/sponsor and encourage women to pursue adjudication appointments and otherwise enhance their profiles and practice.