Bianca McDonnell

Associate, Madrid



Bianca McDonnell is an Associate in the firm's International Arbitration Practice in Madrid. Admitted in Australia and New York, Bianca focuses her practice on investment arbitration proceedings under the ICSID rules, and has experience in complex commercial arbitrations and construction proceedings. Prior to joining White & Case Bianca worked for a leading international arbitrator where she acted as assistant and secretary to the tribunal, specialising in investment arbitrations and large construction arbitrations involving state-owned entities.

Bianca is an Adjunct Professor at IE University in Madrid, where she has co-taught an LLM class of International Investment Law and Arbitration with Ignacio Madalena. She acts as a voluntary Expert Advisor for the U.S. Government's Department of Commerce's Commercial Law Development Program, where she teaches law students from developing countries in the Middle East and Asia about international arbitration and oral advocacy for the Willem C. Vis Moot.

Bars and Courts
New South Wales, Australia
New York
Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
University of Technology


Master of Laws (LLM)
Georgetown University

Law Center



Some examples of her experience include:

  • Representation of a Japanese investor in an ICSID arbitration against the Kingdom of Spain under the Energy Charter Treaty.
  • Representation of a Belgium company in a commercial arbitration in the Madrid Court of Arbitration against a Spanish company on the basis of a Share Purchase Agreement.
  • Representation of the Contractor in a proceeding before the project's Dispute Adjudication Board (DAB) against the Employer, related to the Panama Canal Third Set of Locks Project.
  • Assistant to the Tribunal in LSG Building Solutions GmbH & others v. Romania, an ICSID arbitration brought by ten European investors against Romania under the Energy Charter Treaty.*
  • Secretary to the Tribunal in a multi-billion dollar ICC construction arbitration brought by Refinería de Cartagena S.A., a Colombian state-owned entity against a major US construction company concerning the construction of an oil refinery in Colombia. The seat of arbitration was New York, with New York law applying.*
  • Assistant to the Tribunal in an ICSID arbitration brought by Cyprus Popular Bank against Greece, related to events which occurred during the Greek financial crisis.*
  • Assistant to the Tribunal in an ICSID arbitration against Belgium brought by DP World PLC concerning a concession in the Port of Antwerp.*
  • Assistant to the Tribunal in an ICSID arbitration against the UAE brought by a UK investor Shokat Mohammed Dalal, arising from a failed real estate development.*
  • Assistant to the Tribunal in an ICSID revision proceeding brought by Hungary against a French investor.*

*Prior to joining the firm.

Speaking Engagements

Panelist: 'Asistentes y Secretarios del Tribunal Arbitral', Webinar, Guatemala VYAP.

Panelist: 'Abogada v. COVID-19: Ser mujer y no morir en el intento', Webinar, CEA Mujeres.

Panelist: 'El rol de los precedentes en el arbitraje', ICDR Y&I and Mexico VYAP, Mexico City.

Moderator: 'Behind the scenes of decision making', IX Coimbra International Arbitration Conference under 40 event, Portugal.

Colloquium on International Investment Law and Competition Law, presenting an article on 'The Use of Evidence Obtained through a State's Special Antitrust Powers in Investment Arbitration', Zaragoza, Spain.


The Use of Evidence Obtained through a State's Special Antitrust Powers in Investment Arbitration, European Yearbook of International Economic Law, Springer, 2020, Co-author with K. Baptista.

Case note, Theodoros Adamakopoulos and Others v. Republic of Cyprus, ICSID Case No. ARB/15/49, in European Investment Law and Arbitration Review, European Federation for Investment Law and Arbitration and Queen Mary University, Brill | Nijhoff, Volume 5 (2020).