Vis Moot

Are you looking for a challenge? Immerse yourself in commercial law, gain mooting experience and work closely in a team – all through the Vis Moot.

As the world's most prestigious private international law mooting competition, you'll gain exceptional skills and go head to head against law schools from across the globe.

What is the Vis Moot?

The Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot (or Vis Moot) is an international moot court competition held annually in Vienna, Austria before Easter. It is the largest moot in the world for international trade law. A sister moot, known as the Willem C. Vis (East) Moot, is held in Hong Kong just before the rounds in Vienna every year.

The moot consists of submitting two written memoranda prior to the moot on designated dates for both sides of the dispute and then arguing their cases before arbitration tribunals in Hong Kong and Vienna. The students are expected to:

  • research two areas of international commercial law (international commercial arbitration and the international sale of goods) in detail and then apply them to a hypothetical case
  • prepare two sets of written legal arguments (one for each side in the dispute)
  • prepare for the oral rounds in Hong Kong and Vienna – arguing the case against law schools from around the world just before Easter each year.

Why take part?

Not only will you earn a credit point in MLL355 International Litigation and Dispute Settlement, but you’ll also be involved in one of the most highly regarded competitions in the profession, which is great for your career. In preparing the Moot you will have enormous opportunities to meet with and learn from the most intelligent academics, practitioners and students in this area and have a unique learning experience that inspires your legal career.

How is the Deakin team put together?

We’ll select a team of 4-6 students to take part in the Vis Moot in 2018 - 2019.

Previous study of international commercial law is strongly recommended but not required. We’ll start working on this year’s problem shortly after Trimester 2 exams finish.

We’ll then continue full time at our Melbourne Burwood Campus or Deakin Downton until Easter.

How does the team prepare?

From the outset, students take on the role of legal counsel and argue hypothetical cases before an academic, another student, or a practitioner acting as a judge. Students are expected to undertake legal research and drafting to prepare memoranda and to support their oral arguments.

Students will be provided the exclusive access to the library collections for the Vis Moot Competition, and the facilities for mooting at the Melbourne Burwood Campus and Deakin Downtown.

Nothing in the study of law prepared me for practice better than doing the Vis Moot…as we approached the advocacy part of the Vis Moot, there was a cooperative intensity to the work that truly reflected the way you work together in practice to prepare for a trial.

Duncan Travis, Partner (Allens Linklaters)

Mooter 2000-2001

Deakin students at the Vis Moot?

Deakin Law School is one of only five universities from more than 360 global competitors to have competed in each year of the history of the Vis Moot, which commenced in 1993.

It is also one of only four universities to have won the Vienna rounds twice (in 1999 and 2014), and have been a grand finalist in Hong Kong twice, and in 2017 took out number one placing (from 125 participating teams) in the general Hong Kong rounds.

Team award
The Deakin Law School team has earned the title of World Champion twice, winning the Vis Moot in Vienna in 1998/1999 and 2013/2014. In addition, Deakin University was the runner-up in 1995/1996.

In the Vis (East) Moot in Hong Kong, the DLS Team was runner-up in 2005/2006 and 2009/2010 and won third place in 2004/2005.

Best Memorandum
The Deakin team won the Best Memorandum for Respondent in 1996/1997.

Best Oralist
Our team members have also performed well in the category of Best Oralist. In 2004/05, Joanne Berenger won Best Oralist in the general round in Hong Kong.  She was preceded by Andrew Molnar who was one of two Best Oralists in 2002/2003 and earlier, Kelly Longton won third place in 1995/1996 in Vienna.

In 2017/2018, Deakin performed admirably once again, with one of our students taking an honourable mention for best speaker.

Interested in the 2018/2019 Vis Moot?

We've got a strong track record across the Vis Moot's entire 25 year history and will be taking part in the Vis Moot and the Vis (East) Moot once again in 2018/2019.

A free information session will be held on Thursday, August 9 at Deakin Downtown from 6:00pm – 8:00pm. Please register if you would like to attend.
To apply, please follow the instructions at CloudDeakin or the recruitment email and contact Dr Shu Zhang via email.

Find out more about the Vis Moot competition in Vienna
Learn more about the Vis Moot competition in Hong Kong

Applications are now open and will close on 17 August 2018. To apply, please send the following to Dr Shu Zhang:

  • your CV
  • a copy of your academic results (a copy downloaded from StudentConnect is sufficient)
  • a short covering letter explaining your understanding of the moot and your availability during T3, 2018.

Contact us

Coach of the Deakin Law School Vis Moot team
Dr Shu Zhang
Email Dr Shu Zhang