The report, 2022 Construction Adjudication in the United Kingdom: Tracing trends and guiding reform, provides the broadest and deepest empirical analysis of UK construction adjudication to date. Co-authored by Professor Renato Nazzini and Aleksander Kalisz of the Centre of Construction Law and Dispute Resolution (CCLDR), it looks at the experience of construction adjudication in the UK from the perspective of users and key organisations, and provides an analysis of vital empirical data on key aspects of adjudication.
The report analyses data drawn from two questionnaires: one addressed to Adjudicator Nominating Bodies (ANBs); a second addressed to individuals involved with statutory adjudication. Ten ANBs replied to the first questionnaire, and 257 individuals replied to the second.
Statutory adjudication was introduced in the UK in 1998 and the report finds that referrals have steadily increased, reaching an all-time high in the year to April 2021. This suggests, the authors argue, that Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic have not significantly affected the upward trend in adjudication referrals.
The authors found that:
- parties predominantly comply with adjudicators’ decisions. 25% of questionnaire respondents said that they have never experienced an adjudicated dispute being referred to litigation or arbitration. 42% of respondents replied that this occurs in less than 5% of cases
- 40% of questionnaire respondents suspected, at least on one occasion, that the adjudicator was biased toward one of the parties. The main cause of the suspicion of bias was the adjudicator’s relationship with the parties or party representatives
- Few British ANBs publish the composition of their adjudicator panels online. Among the eight that do, women account for only 7.88% of listed adjudicators. There is no data on the representation of people with other protected characteristics
- 58% of questionnaire respondents felt that adjudicators' decisions should not be published. However, 30% replied that they should be published with redactions, following the model adopted in Singapore
The report is the first output of a three-year CCLDR research project, produced with the support of The Adjudication Society.
The Report will be launched at The Adjudication Society’s Annual Conference in Edinburgh on 3 November 2022 and at the Centre of Construction Law & Dispute Resolution 35th Anniversary Conference at King’s College London on 17 November 2022.