FacultyFaculty/Author Profile
Rachel W. Thorn

Rachel W. Thorn

Chadbourne & Parke LLP

New York, NY, USA

Rachel Thorn specializes in international commercial arbitration, international litigation and public international law.

In her more than 15 years working in the industry, Ms. Thorn has successfully represented corporate clients, States and State-owned entities in proceedings conducted under all the major arbitration rules. She has extensive experience in disputes involving the energy and construction sectors, as well as disputes involving joint ventures and long-term cooperation agreements, concession contracts, production sharing and off-take agreements, as well as purchase price adjustment and other post acquisition disputes.

Ms. Thorn has also advised in investor-state disputes, including expropriation claims and other claims involving State responsibility under public international law, in addition to advising clients on investment structuring and coverage under political risk insurance policies.

Representative Matters

  • A large privately-owned US company in multiple ICC arbitrations against three European chemical companies involving a joint venture for the manufacture of a petrochemical intermediate. The claims include breaches of contract and the misappropriation of trade secrets with over US$1 billion at issue. French law governs and the proceedings are conducted in English and French.
  • A Chinese manufacture of solar wafers in an ICC arbitration in Geneva arising out of the breach and subsequent repudiation of a long-term supply agreement with an aggregate value of over US$800 million. The Tribunal's partial award on jurisdiction, which found the purchaser's insolvency in Portugal did not deprive it of the capacity to arbitrate in Switzerland, was recently upheld by the Swiss Supreme Court.
  • A European state-owned energy company in an ICC arbitration in Stockholm arising out of a gas pricing dispute with over €200 million at issue.
  • A European-based, global energy company in an ICC arbitration in Geneva involving two separate gas price re-opener disputes arising out of a long-term gas supply agreement. The value of the dispute was over €230 million and settled on favorable terms.
  • A central European State in an ICC arbitration brought by a major European utility arising out of share purchase agreement concluded as part of the State's privatization of the electricity distribution sector, with related ICSID proceedings brought under the Energy Charter Treaty and a bilateral investment treaty.
  • A European-based, global-energy company in an ICC arbitration in Geneva arising out of the termination of a gas supply agreement for hardship.
  • A Spanish and French technology company in an ICC arbitration against a Spanish entity involving a post-acquisition dispute with claims of fraudulent inducement, misrepresentation, accounting fraud, and breaches of representations and warranties.
  • A multinational energy company in connection with an ICC arbitration in Singapore with a Southeast Asian State relating to the validity of a long-term off-take agreement. The amount in dispute was over US$1.5 billion and the arbitration settled on favorable terms for the client.
  • Pre-arbitration advice and counseling to a European integrated energy company (electricity, gas and oil) in relation to dispute arising out of concession agreement with an African State. Issues focused on declarations of commerciality. Over €300 million at issue.
  • A Dutch holding company in arbitration brought by the leading Spanish and French manufacturer of household appliances involving a post-acquisition dispute centered on claims for breaches of representations and warranties.
  • A Southeast Asian commercial airline in an arbitration brought by the leading global provider of jet engine inspection and maintenance services and jet engine subleases involving breach of contract claims.
  • A multinational project sponsor in an UNCITRAL arbitration in Australia against a Southeast Asian State-owned entity arising out of a long-term energy conversion agreement for geothermal steam and liquids.


Ms. Thorn is recognized by Legal 500 (2013) for her leading position on the field of international arbitration. She is also named in Benchmark Litigation as a Future Star (2014) and received honorable mention in the Global Arbitration Review’s 2011 worldwide survey of the 45 leading figures of the international arbitration bar under 45.


Speeches and Events


  • University of Wisconsin, Madison, B.A., 1992
  • University of Chicago Law School, J.D., 1996

Professional Background

  • Law clerk to the Honorable Richard W. Goldberg, United States District Judge at the US Court of International Trade


  • 2006 England and Wales
  • 1997 New York


  • English
  • French
  • Spanish

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