552.01 Law and Governance in China

Is there law in China? Does law matter in China? If yes, how does it work? The same as how law works in the U.S.? This seminar endeavors to understand law and governance in China. We will explore the following questions together: What is the constitutional and private legal foundation of Chinese economy? What roles has law played in the different stages of China’s market transition and different sectors of Chinese economy? China’s transformation from a planned economy to the arguably most capitalist country in the world, despite the absence of a well-functioning legal system, at least from the western perspective, raises numerous questions. Why do Chinese obey or not obey the law? How does law cope with a rapidly changing society? How does law interact with (both high and low) politics? This seminar covers both law on the books and law in action, emphasizes change and development in understanding law and governance, and takes China as a comparative case study to deepen our understanding of the fundamental nature of legal institutions.

Class participation: 10%; 2 response papers (1 page per paper): 20%; final paper (18 pages minimum): 70%. JD students have an option to write a longer paper (30 pages minimum) including extensive research and original ideas to satisfy their writing requirements. Please seek the instructor's approval for this writing credit by the end of October. 

Fall 2021

Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor
Course Credits
Research paper option, 25+ pages
Research and/or analytical paper
Class participation
Shitong Qiao
Sakai site: https://sakai.duke.edu/portal/site/LAW.552.01.F21
Email list: LAW.552.01.F21@sakai.duke.edu
Degree Requirements
Course Requirements - JD
Course Requirements - LLM-ICL
Course Requirements - Public Interest
Course Areas of Practice