Won Kidane

Won Kidane

Professor of Law

 Sullivan Hall 433


Email Won


  • International Arbitration
  • Transnational Litigation
  • International and Comparative law
  • International Investment Law
  • Public International Law.


  • S.J.D. Georgetown
  • J.D. University of Illinois College of Law
  • LL.M University of Georgia
  • LL.B Addis Ababa University


Professor Kidane is a Fulbright Scholar and Full Professor of Law at the Seattle University School of Law. He teaches and writes in the areas of international arbitration, transnational litigation, international and comparative law, international investment law, and public international law. Professor Kidane is the author of The Culture of International Arbitration (Oxford University Press, 2017), China-Africa Dispute Settlement: The Law, Economics, and Culture of International arbitration (Kluwer, 2011), two more co-authored books, and more than 40 law review articles and book chapters. He is currently writing a comprehensive book on Africa's International Investment law Regimes (Oxford University Press, forthcoming). He has given more than a hundred lectures in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Middle East, and North America.

Before joining the Seattle University Law School in 2008, Professor Kidane taught at Penn State Dickinson School of Law for three years. Prior to joining the Penn State School of Law, Kidane practiced law in Washington D.C. with the Law firm of Piper Rudnick (now DLA-Piper), and later Hunton & Williams for four years. His practice focused on international arbitration and litigation. He continues to practice international investment and commercial arbitration under a variety of rules including UNCITRAL, ICC, LCIA, PCA, and GAFTA. He also serves as an arbitrator and is on the roster of arbitrators of a number of international arbitral institutions including the Hong Kong International Arbitration Center (HKIAC), China International Economic Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), Cairo Regional Center for International Arbitration (CRCICA), and the Saudi Center for Commercial Arbitration (SCCA).

Professor Kidane teaches Civil Procedure, International Arbitration and Litigation, Public International Law and Immigration Law. During the summer, Professor Kidane also teaches international arbitration and International and comparative law at the School of Transnational Law of Peking University in Shenzhen, China.

Professor Kidane holds SJD from Georgetown, JD from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, LL.M from the University of Georgia, and LL.B from Addis Ababa University. He is admitted to practice law in the District of Columbia, Washington State, and Illinois.



THE CULTURE OF INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION (Oxford University Press, 2017). https://global.oup.com/academic/product/the-culture-of-international-arbitration-9780199973927?cc=us&lang=en&

CHINA- AFRICA DISPUTE SETTLMENT: LAW, ECONOMICS AND CULTURE OF ARBITRATION (Walters Kluwer, 2011). https://lrus.wolterskluwer.com/store/products/china-africa-dispute-settlement-law-culture-economics-arbitration-prod-9041136746/hardcover-item-1-9041136746

LITIGATINF LAW: THE JURSPRUDENCE OF THE ERITREA-ETHIOPIA ARBITRAL TRIBUNAL IN THE HAUGE (with Sean Murphy & Thomas R. Snider) (Oxford University Press 2013). https://global.oup.com/academic/product/litigating-war-9780199793723?cc=us&lang=en&

GLOBAL ISSUES IN IMMIGRATION (with Raquel Aldana, Beth Lyon and Karla McKanders, West, 2013). https://www.westacademic.com/Aldana-Kidane-Lyon-and-McKanders-Global-Issues-in-Immigration-Law-9781634590495


Africa and the Culture of International Arbitration, ICSID REVIEW (Oxford, forthcoming 2019).

Contemporary Trends in International Investment Law and Africa’s Dilemmas in the Pan-African Investment Code51 GEORGE WASHINGTON INTERNATIONAL LAW REVIEW 406 (2018).

China and India's Investment Treaty Approaches and Implications for AfricaLOYOLA UNIVERSITY CHICAGO LAW JOURNAL 406 (2018).

China-Africa Bilateral Investment Treaties in Comparative Context, 49 CORNELL INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 141 (2016).

The China-Africa Factor in the ICISD Legitimacy Debate, 35 UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 559 (2014).

China-Africa Investment Treaties: Old Rules, New Challenges, 37 FORDHAM INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 1035 (with Weidong ZHU, 2014).

Procedural Due Process in the Expulsion of Aliens under International, United States and European Union Law: A Comparative Analysis, 27 EMORY INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 286 (2013).

The Inquisitorial Advantage in Removal Proceeding45 AKRON LAW REVIEW 647 (2012).

Managing Displacement by Law,44 VANDERBILT TRANSNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 1 (Spring 2011).

The Terrorism Bar to Asylum in Australia, Canada, The United Kingdom and the United States, 33 FORDHAM INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 300 (Spring 2010).

The Alienage Spectrum in the United States,20 BERKELEY LA RAZA LAW REVIEW 89 (Spring 2010).

The Status of Private Military Contractors under International Humanitarian Law, 38 DENVER JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL LAW AND POLICY 361 (Spring 2010)

The Terrorism Exception to Asylum: Managing the Uncertainty in Status Determination, 41 UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF LAW REFORM 669 (2008)

Revisiting the Rules of Evidence and Procedure in Adversarial Immigration Proceedings, 57 CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW 93 (2008)

The Challenges of Representing Detained Noncitizens in Expedited Removal Proceedings, 17 WIDENER LAW JOURNAL 391 (2008)

Civil Liability for Violations of International Humanitarian law: The Jurisprudence of The Ethiopia-Eritrea Claims Tribunal in The Hague, 25 WISCONSIN INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 23 (2007)

Combating Corruption Through International Law in Africa: A Comparative Analysis(with Tom Snider), 40 CORNELL INTERNATIONAL LAW JOURNAL 691 (2007)

Committing a Crime While a Refugee: Rethinking the Issue of Deportation in Light of the Principle Against Double Jeopardy, 34 HASTINGS CONSTITUTIONAL LAW QUARTERLY 383 (2007)

An Injury to the Citizen a Pleasure to the State: A Peculiar Challenge to the Enforcement of International Refugee Law, 6 CHICAGO KENT JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL AND COMPARATIVE LAW 116 (2006).

Essays, Book Chapters, Book Reviews, And Other Publications

Legislative Framework for Industrial Hubs: Critical Review and Lessons for Africa (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2019).

Oxford Bibliographies, Africa’s International Investment law Regimes (Forthcoming 2019).

Sustainable Development Provisions in Contemporary Investment Treaties (Kluwer, forthcoming 2019).

Agreements and Dispute Settlement in China-Africa Relations (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2019).The Legal Framework for the Protection of Foreign Direct Investment in Ethiopia (Oxford University Press, 2019).

Alternatives to the Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS), An African Perspective, Global Economic Governance Africa (GEG Africa, Pretoria, South Africa, 2018).

Getting the Composition of Arbitral Tribunals Right, United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Occasional Paper No. 2, on Legal Assistance to Make Foreign Investment Work Better for Sustainable Development in the Least Developed Countries (2017).

Missed Opportunities in the ILC Draft Articles on the Expulsion of Aliens, HARVARD HUMAN RIGHTS JOURNAL (forthcoming 2017)

The Contributions of Africans to the Development of International Law,AFRICAN COMMISSION JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL LAW (forthcoming 2017)

Transnational Dispute Management Special Issue on Africa(edited with Thomas R. Snider, Perry Bechky, (2016)

Reflections on Professor Romero's Insight on Decriminalization of Border Crossings, 39 FORDHAM URBAN LAW JOURNAL 19 (2012)

Understanding Human Trafficking and Its Victims, 9 SEATTLE JOURNAL FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE 537 (2011)

Review of international Law and Dispute Settlement: New Problems and Techniques, by Duncan French, Mathew Saul & Nigel D. White (ed.) (Hart publishing, 2010.) LAW & POLITICS REVIEW, VOL. 20, No. 10. 569FF (2010)

Review of Immigration Law as Contract Law by Victor C. Romero, 34 SEATTLE L. REV. 889 (2011)

The Ethiopian Red Terror Trialsin M. CHERIF BASSIOUNI (ed), POST CONFLICT JUSTICE (Transnational pub, 2002).


Recent Activity

Does Cultural Diversity Improve or Hinder the Quality of Arbitral Justice? (March 31, 2017) http://kluwerarbitrationblog.com/2017/03/31/does-cultural-diversity-improve-or-hinder-the-quality-of-arbitral-justice/

Trumps travel ban avoids some legal pitfalls but not all, local experts say, Seattle Times, (March 6, 2017) http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/trumps-new-travel-ban-avoids-some-legal-pitfalls-but-not-all-local-experts-say/ 

Fate of "Dreamers" could hinge on which court hears the case in Seattle (March 7, 2017) http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/fate-of-dreamers-could-hinge-on-which-court-hears-seattle-area-case/ 

Constitutionality of the travel ban (February 5, 2017) Q13Fox. 

Federal Judge in Seattle Expedites Case Against President Trump's Travel Ban (February 21, 2017) http://q13fox.com/2017/02/13/federal-judge-in-seattle-expedites-case-against-president-trumps-travel-ban/ 

Appeals Court could rule on travel ban by mid-next week say experts (February 5, 2017) http://www.king5.com/news/local/appeals-court-could-rule-on-travel-ban-by-mid-week-say-legal-experts/399879468 

How immigration enforcement will change under Trump Administration (February 22, 2017) http://www.king5.com/news/politics/national/how-immigration-enforcement-will-change-under-trump-administration/411435905 

Kitsap's ‘sanctuary' status a gray area (February 4, 2017) http://www.kitsapsun.com/story/news/2017/02/04/kitsaps-sanctuary-status-gray-area/97464452/ also USA Today at https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2017/02/04/kitsaps-sanctuary-status-gray-area/97464452/ 

What does it mean to be a "Sanctuary City"? (February 2, 2017) http://knkx.org/post/what-does-it-mean-be-sanctuary-city 

Washington Will take a swing at Trump's order (January 30, 217) http://crosscut.com/2017/01/washington-will-take-a-swing-at-trumps-order/ 

Unpacking Government: What rights do non-citizens have? (February 13, 2017) http://knkx.org/post/unpacking-government-what-rights-do-noncitizens-have