Student Writing Competition

Student Writing Competition

Please click here to download the 2017 - 2018 information packet.

AIPN has sponsored an annual student writing competition since 2001. The competition is open to all full-time seniors in a four-year program and all graduate students enrolled at an accredited university in either the Fall 2017 or Spring 2018 semesters. Essays should be an original work at editorial length (no more than 4,000 words, excluding footnotes) on any specific issue of the student's choice which is directly related to international petroleum negotiations, such as matters of contract, law, or policy.

Students enrolled at schools associated with our Education Advisory Board program must submit their papers to the professor representing the school in the program, who will submit the top four (4) papers from that school. Students who are not enrolled at schools represented by the AIPN Education Advisory Board may submit their essays directly to AIPN.

One prize will be awarded, although AIPN reserves the right to award fewer than one or none at all, if it determines that none of the submitted entries justifies an award. Previous winners are not eligible to participate again. The essays will be reviewed by a committee comprised of educators, lawyers, business managers and international negotiators. Selection of the winning essays is solely at the discretion of the committee. Essays will be judged on topical relevance (is the topic useful to members of AIPN in their work?), originality of content, creativity, insight, clarity, and support for viewpoints taken. Each student may submit only one entry. Essays become the property of AIPN. AIPN may request proof of enrollment for the submission to be considered.

All essays must be submitted to the AIPN in one email no later than November 13, 2017, in PDF or Word format to Please include your current curriculum vitae that does not exceed one-page in 12 point font and complete contact information including name, email address and phone number. Applicants will be notified of the winners on or around January 22, 2018.

For the 2017 - 2018 competition, one awardee will receive:

  • Registration to either the AIPN International Petroleum Summit and its related evening events, to be held in London, UK on April 23 - 25, 2018 or the 2018 Model Contracts Workshop (US city and season pending).
  • Roundtrip, advance booking coach ticket to conference/workshop city.
  • $300 expense reimbursement, for expenses incurred directly relating to this conference and supported by receipts
  • Standard lodging at the conference location, and
  • Student membership in AIPN for one year.

In addition, the winning essays may be published by AIPN in the Advisor and may be eligible for publication in the Journal of World Energy Law and Business, published by Oxford University Press.

*Students related to current AIPN Officers or Directors or past winners are not eligible to win. Previous Student Writing Competition winners are excluded from participating. By submitting an entry, you certify that you are not related to any foreign (outside the United States) government official, nor are you subject to any United States economic sanctions.

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Read previous papers

Please note: Login with your AIPN username and password will be required for viewing the winning papers.

2013 Winning Papers

Limiting Damages for Loss of Profits and Loss of Production Under the AIPN 2013 Model Form International Operating Agreement” by Leanne Desbarats, University of Calgary (Please login with username and password to view)
Investment Protection in Colombia: Can Investors Rely on the Full Protection Security Clause?” by John Riggs, University of Houston (Please login with username and password to view)

2014 Winning Papers

U.S. LNG Exportation: The Regulatory Process and its Practical Implications” by John Adams, SMU Dedman School of Law (Please login with username and password to view)
Applying Game Theory to Oil and Gas Unitization Agreements: How to Resolve Mutually Beneficial, Yet Competitive Situations” by Barrett Schitka, University of Houston Law Center (Please login with username and password to view)

2015 Winning Papers

"The Evolution of the Law of Indirect Expropriation and its Application to Oil and Gas Investments” by Omar Chehade, University of Calgary
The Trans-Caspian Pipeline: Implications for the Five Littoral States" by Bryce Cason, University of Tulsa
Arbitrating International LNG Disputes: Lessons Learned over Two Decades" by Lisa Bohmer, University of Houston
Unlocking Mexico’s Shale Gas Reserves: Folly or Fortune?” by Michael Ventocilla, University of Houston

2016 Winning Papers

"Take or Pay: A Different Perspective? Ensuring ‘Top’ Clauses Always Come Out on Top" by Masayu Lynn Masagoes, University of Western Australia
"State ownership of petroleum resources: an obstacle to shale gas development in the UK?" by Meri-Katriina Pyhäranta, doctoral researcher, University of Eastern Finland; visiting researcher, University of Texas at Austin