European China Law Studies Association’s map on Chinese law taught in Europe

The European China Law Studies Association (ECLS) was founded in 2006 to advance the research on Chinese law. It has since become a notable international venue for all the scholars and practitioners interested in Chinese law.

Besides blog posts, annual conferences, and many other events, the ECLS is gathering information about Chinese law taught in Europe. The map on the ECLS website aims to cover all the study programs and elective courses which are focusing on Chinese law. The current map shows over 20 courses in 13 different countries.

However, the map is yet to be completed. Institutions in Europe that offer Chinese law courses are welcome to update  their information on the current map by sending an email to Marianne von Blomberg (

This blog post was written by the Center’s intern, Samppa Penttinen.

Prof. Kimmo Nuotio giving guest lecture on Criminal Law as Transnational Law at PKU Law School

On 17 November 2020, Professor Kimmo Nuotio, Board Member of the China Law Center joined the 2020 Fall Semester Online PKU Law School Distinguished Global Faculty lecture series. The lecture series aims to further the internationalization of PKU Law School and foster global awareness among law students beyond the confinement of national boundaries.

Professor Nuotio contributed to the series with a presentation on “Criminal Law as Transnational Law”.

If international criminal law is a concept already relatively well-known, the concept of transnational criminal law is still a relatively new one. Neil Boister has proposed an understanding that whereas international criminal law proper is based on values and principles, the transnational criminal law only is about state’s collaborating in addressing issues of cross-border criminality. Accordingly, transnational criminal law deals with international illegal market, where criminal activities often are organised and run for profit. Transnational criminal law deals with a rather scattered set of topics, and the aim is to strengthen the enforcement of the agreed norms by means of international treaties. In his talk, Professor Nuotio presented this scene and discussed the problems in the creation of transnational criminal law, as the most powerful states have had a biggest say in the drafting of such treaties. As a result, transnational criminal law of today has some problematic features, which should be addressed: it should be enlightened. He also talked about how we could relate an enlightened version of transnational criminal law with law and development studies. Finally, he examined if and how transnational criminal law could be transformed and become a genuine global criminal law.

Professor Genlin Liang and Professor Su Jiang from PKU Law School acted as commenters for Professor Nuotio’s lecture. The lecture received positive feedback from PKU Law students who found his topic very interesting, especially regarding transnational criminal law.

China Minor Programme at the University of Lapland

In today’s post, the Finnish China Law Centre will be introducing a minor programme offered at the University of Lapland, titled “China: Domestic, Global and Arctic Trajectories”. Spearheaded by Professor Matti Nojonen, the programme adopts an interdisciplinary approach when considering the relationship between domestic driving forces within China, its visions of globalisation as well as its escalating engagement in the Arctic Regions. Upon completion of the course, students will be expected to be equipped with the proficiency of meta-cognitive skills in conceptualizing the distinctive Chinese domestic realities. Through that, it is expected that students will have a better proficiency when interacting with Chinese companies and institutions in the global and regional context, particularly that of the Arctic region.

This minor programme has a scope of 25 ECTS credits, where the following six courses, each granting 5 ECTS credits upon completion are being offered.

1. Chinese Culture and History 

The course offers a critical and pluralist view on the history and culture of China, which encompasses the intersectionalities underlying the continuity and discontinuity of institutions, virtues and culture on a meta-level, and how that continues to affect nation building in modern China.

2. China’s Political System and China as a Global Actor

The course discusses the recent development of China which allows its ascension from a global actor to great power through a political lens by analyzing the role of the Party and other institutions. It seeks to provide the perspective where the Arctic as a region is not immune to the ambition of China’s strategy and policies which is driven by both economic and political actors.

3. China – Business and State

This course aims to explore the issues influencing the economic development, business practices and strategic behavior of China. A critical examination of how traditional culture shapes market and business behavior is undertaken. This courses also seeks to analyse the growing Chinese economic activities and presence in the Arctic region from both state-endorsed and private involvements through investments and tourism.

4. Chinese Society – China and Media

The course provides a multidimensional analysis of the role and forms of media and how that shapes interactions in daily life. The role of “parallel” media companies is studied in relation to their connection with the Party and censorship machine in China. Furthermore, the demography of social media users is given attention in highlighting the dynamics between freedom of speech and censorship.

5. Legal Culture and Legal System in Chinese Society

The course focuses on the question of a Chinese understanding of the rule of law through a historical and theoretical lens. Furthermore, a contextual approach is taken whereby each year a particular sector of legal development in China will be studied in detail through the intersectionality of culture, institutions and politics.

6. Chinese Language 

The course aims to provide students with the basic knowledge of Chinese language and related cultural issues.

The course welcomes the participation of all degree and exchange students at the University of Lapland and Open University. The courses run throughout the academic year. Therefore, students will have the flexibility of taking individual modules from the programme or participate in the entire minor programme. The flexibility of the course is also extended to students from other disciplines where there are no pre-requisites that are required for their participation in the course.

The language of instruction for all modules and materials used in the programme is in English. The studies employ a wide variety of pedagogical approaches in the forms of lectures, seminars, movies and media analyses, related literature as well as a flipped-classroom approach, encouraging engagement beyond the chalk-and-talk settings. Aware of the virtue of partnership, the university often invites guest researchers from partner universities to deliver guest lectures to complement the learning of the students.

The programme has been running for four years now and has attracted 535 students.

More information on the course can be found at the University of Lapland’s website and weboodi.

This blog post was written by the Center’s intern, Mr. Kelvin Choo Wei Cheng. Kelvin is a undergraduate student at the University of Warwick, and an exchange student at University of Helsinki for the autumn and spring terms 2019-2020.



East Asia is an economically connected region with overlapping historical, linguistic, and cultural characteristics, as well as diverse nations and groups with different political systems and contemporary cultures.

For a more international perspective, University of Turku, a member institution of the Finnish China Law Center, sets up the master’s programme called East Asian Studies (EAST). With this Programme, participants will learn the sociocultural understanding and analytical skills of international relations and history development.

Students in the Programme would gain expertise on East Asian contemporary history, politics and societies and learn social science research methods. Additionally, they would have good opportunities for student exchange in East Asian universities as well as receiving East Asian study and research scholarships. The Programme provides expertise to enter international public, private and third sector professions. Students would also become qualified to apply to PhD programmes and pursue an academic career.

The Programme sets up six modules, including Study and Research Skills, Histories of East Asian Countries, Contemporary Politics, Societies, and Economies of East Asia, East Asia in Regional and Global Context, Master’s Thesis, Work Life Competences and Language Studies. It provides also courses on the following subjects about China:

Introduction to Chinese Contemporary History

Chinese Politics and Society

China’s Urban Governance and Sustainability

Chinese Economy 

Chinese Workplace Cultures

Chinese language study

The application period for the Programme begins on 8 January 2020, and ends on 22 January 2020 . For information about the application process and how to apply, please visit the Programme website.

The text is contributed by the Center’s intern, Ms. Zhiqi Luan. Zhiqi Luan is a graduate student at the China University of Political Science and Law, and an exchange student at University of Helsinki for the autumn term 2019-2020.



Globalization has brought about situations where which different bodies of law become increasingly intertwined beyond traditional borders. Legal experts and scholars are now required to examine the content of national, international, European, and transnational laws when they apply norms.

In order to deliver the most practical knowledge and insight into the increasing globalization of law and legal thinking, University of Helsinki, a member institution of the Finnish China Law Center, sets up a new master’s programme called Global Governance Law (GGL).

The two-year long research-oriented Master’s programme offers series of lectures, seminars and interactive tutorials built by internationally distinguished experts in their fields. It is designed to provide solid foundation and skills to prepare students for expert duties in public administration, international organizations, NGO, law firms, corporate legal departments, and legal academia. During their study, programme participants will be able to specialize in key fields of law are of particular interest to them such as Global Governance Law, Public International Law, European Union Law, Global Administrative Law, Human Rights Law, International Institutions, Finance and the Environment, and Business and Company Law.

“The Master’s programme also provides the opportunity to study Chinese law, rarely on offer in faculties of law”, said Päivi Leino-Sandberg, Professor of Transnational European Law and Director of GGL.  The Director of the Finnish China Law Center, Professor Ulla Liukkunen is in charge of the Chinese law stream of GGL which provides courses on the following subjects:

  • Chinese legal system: history and presence
  • Business and Company law: governing economics
  • China in international organisations – transnational governance
  • Corporate social responsibility and fundamental labour rights in China

Students can also engage in Chinese law research activities through the Center with our strong connections with top Chinese universities.

The application period for the programme begins on 03 Dec 2019 at 08.00 (UTC+2), and ends on 10 Jan 2020 at 15.00 (UTC+2). For information about the application process and how to apply, please visit the programme website.


Teaching staff of the Master’s Programme in Global Governance Law: Jaakko Husa (on the left), Heikki Pihlajamäki, Päivi Leino-Sandberg, Ida Koivisto, Sakari Melander and Marianna Muravyeva. Photo credit: Mika Federley.


Conference on Methodology of researching and teaching of Chinese law in Russia

On 18 October 2019, the Saint Petersburg State University in collaboration with the Polish Research Center for Chinese Law and Economy, the Finnish Center of Chinese Law and Chinese Legal Culture, and Sino-Russian Legal Research Center of Jilin University will hold an International Conference on ‘Methodology of researching and teaching Chinese law.’

Time: Friday 18 October 2019, 10:00 – 17:40.

Venue: Assembly hall (room N 64), Saint Petersburg State University, 22nd Line of Vasilyevskyisland, 7.

The event is free and open to all that are interested in research and teaching of Chinese law to non-Chinese students.

The full program and list of speakers can be found in the conference programme.

For all inquiries please contact the Organizing Committee at

About the Conference:

The Conference aims to create a platform for discussing and sharing ideas on the issues of Chinese law research and teaching in foreign universities, and to establish cooperation between specialists in relevant fields of Chinese law. The presentations focus on:

  • Defining the concept and the object of legal research.
  • Criteria for good legal research.
  • The role of practice in teaching and researching Chinese Law.
  • The contributions of comparative law to teaching and researching Chinese Law.
  • The interpretation of legal sources.
  • The use of interdisciplinary methods.
  • Quantitative empirical approaches to researching Chinese Law.
  • Building the syllabus for teaching different branches of Chinese Law.

Introducing the China-EU School of Law

In recent years, China has grown to be one of world’s largest economies, being second only to the USA. The GDP increase also means that the living standards of many Chinese have risen and that the government had the necessary resources to further develop China’s legal system. For example, criminal law has changed tremendously, but so did the economic system in order to attract foreign investors. Thus, as a consequence of both globalisation and the increasing importance of China, the need for legal professionals who can effectively combine European and Chinese law has grown as well.

In this post, the Finnish China Law Center would like to introduce The China-EU School of Law (CESL), a manifestation of Sino-European cooperation.  CESL officially opened on 23rd October 2008 at the China University of Political Science and Law in Beijing. It was funded and established by the European Union and the People’s Republic of China. Moreover, it is the only Chinese-European school of law worldwide. For the last decade, CESL has devoted its resources to educating the Chinese and international lawyers of tomorrow. Additionally, it provides professional training for lawyers, prosecutors, judges and civil servants and promoted research and collaboration in order to develop a society based on the rule of law. Thus, the school has successfully become a medium for legal education, research, exchanges and, most importantly, a bridge between the EU and China.

The international academic alliance between 13 European Universities and 3 Chinese universities and institutions is coordinated by the Faculty of Law at Universität Hamburg. Over the years, more than 10.000 Chinese and European students and law practitioners have participated in the school’s activities and there are around 400 students every year. The master’s programme appeals to both Chinese and international students as it provides the essential elements to thrive in the competitive legal field.  While European students can enrol in the English-taught Master of European and International Law (LL.M.), Chinese students can study a Double Master’s programme which combines the LL.M. with a Chinese-taught Master of Chinese Law. Additionally, a new English-taught International Master of Chinese Law for international students will begin in 2019. Furthermore, there are academic exchange options as well: European students can study in China for one semester, while Chinese master students can do an exchange in Europe for two months and Chinese PhD students can spend up to a year in Europe.

Photo credit: China-EU School of Law

Regarding research, the China-EU School of Law focus on examining the legal issues that affect both China and Europe. Thus, the school promotes and enables research on Chinese law, European law, International law etc. Additionally, it is also a forum for legal discussion, as its partners and associates contribute to its research network. The school is ideal for those who enjoy a comparative approach to law, as European students learn about Chinese law and culture and Chinese scholars expand their international law knowledge. Apart from this, the school also offers courses and training for legal professionals who want to broaden their horizons on international matters.

At its 10-year anniversary last year, Mr. Nicolas Chapuis, Ambassador of the EU, stated that: “Since its establishment 10 years ago, CESL has proven to be a center of excellence in legal education. It also has created a unique platform for exchange between Chinese and European students, scholars and legal practitioners, promoting and fostering mutual understanding and learning. Those exchanges can contribute considerably to more and better cooperation in an ever more connected world.”

Furthermore, the celebration offered an amazing opportunity to reflect on the development of the school over the years and on the state of contemporary legal academic cooperation. Various high-level representatives (such as EU Ambassador Chapuis and the former Minister of Justice Mr. Zhang Fusen) and alumni had the chance to share their experiences and insights with current students and members of the CESL network.

To conclude, CELS has majorly contributed not only to creating an enduring alliance between China and the EU, but also as an exceptional example of international cooperation for other countries and continents.

(Thanks to Ms. Adelina G. Dobrila for contributing text for this article).


The Finnish Center of Chinese Law and Chinese Legal Culture is pleased to announce the publication of the Report on its First Four Years (2013-2016).

Cover of the Finnish Center of Chinese Law and Chinese Legal Culture First Four Years Report Report (2013-2016).

The Report contains detailed information about the Center’s objectives and successes and the China law-related activities of its 10 member institutions.

The Report can be viewed and downloaded here.

Questions or comments about the Report are encouraged. Please direct them to Stuart Mooney, Coordinator of the Finnish China Law Center, at stuart.mooney (at)

Annual China Law Week Bridges Nordic Academic and Social Discussions on the Significance of Law in China and China’s Role in World Affairs

Nordic China Law Week 2018 was held between 17 – 23 April in Helsinki, Finland.

The week-long program included a China Law Research Workshop, seminars on China’s Belt and Road Initiative and people management in China, guest lectures on Chinese constitutional law and Chinese intellectual property law, a Nordic China Law Scholars Meeting and more.

Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Helsinki, Professor Pia Letto-Vanamo, opened the China Law Workshop and also gave a presentation on the topic ‘Taking Account of History When Researching Contemporary Law’

‘The Finnish China Law Center and the Faculty of Law of the University of Helsinki were pleased to organize and host this annual event’, said Professor Ulla Liukkunen, Director of the Finnish China Law Center.

‘The Center is proud to contribute to an important academic and social discussion within the Nordic region about the role and significance of law in China, and China’s increasing involvement in global affairs’, Professor Liukkunen said.

For Professor Liukkunen, the strength of Nordic China Law Week 2018 lay in the breadth and relevance of themes covered, the wide appeal of events to both the public and private sectors, and the involvement of scholars and participants from China, the Nordic region and other countries.

Professor Cheng Dawei (Renmin University), speaking about trade governance of China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ initiative at the opening event of Nordic China Law Week 2018

‘That the events during the Week were so well-attended testifies to the fact that Nordic interest in Chinese law and the Chinese legal system continues to grow’, Professor Liukkunen said.


Acting Dean of Beijing Foreign Studies University Law School, Professor Yan Dong, visited Finland to speak during Nordic China Law Week 2018

‘I was particularly pleased at the diversity of participants during the Week. While the focus was primarily scholarly and academic, the organizers were careful to balance law, theory and concrete practice. This was important, including because of the Nordic business community’s deepening engagement with China’.

‘As Nordic China Law Week 2018 was organized to take account of both academic and practical perspectives, its events attracted participants not just from Nordic and Chinese academia, but also from legal practice, the Finnish corporate community – including entrepreneurs from Finland’s thriving startup scene, which is increasingly engaging with China – as well as participants from NGOs, international organizations, the media and the diplomatic community’.

Professor Ulla Liukkunen, Director of the Finnish China Law Center, speaking at the Nordic China Law Scholars Meeting during Nordic China Law Week 2018

‘For example, over 10 nationalities were represented among the more than 80 registered participants in the China Law Research Workshop. Startup founders, ambassadors, students, Finnish government representatives, leading Nordic scholars and representatives of multinational corporations discussed how to research and apply Chinese law, including the practicalities of doing field work and conducting business in China’, Professor Liukkunen said.

Assistant Professor Yan Tian (Peking University Law School) spoke on Chinese constitutional and labour law at events during Nordic China Law Week 2018

The Finnish China Law Center is thankful for the support provided by the University of Helsinki, one of the Center’s 10 member institutions.

‘The Center is grateful to Professor Jukka Kola, Rector of the University of Helsinki, for his support of Nordic China Law Week 2018, including through holding a Rector’s Reception after one of the Week’s flagship events, the China Law Research Workshop, hosted by the Dean of the Faculty of Law, Professor Pia Letto-Vanamo’.

Left to right: Professor Carl Fey (Aalto University); Mr Peter Vesterbacka (entrepreneur and business figure); Professor Ulla Liukkunen (Finnish China Law Center / University of Helsinki); and Dr Wei Lu (Aalto University), speaking during a panel session at a seminar on people management China at Aalto University during Nordic China Law Week 2018

Nordic China Law Week was also supported by the Confucius Institute and Chinese Studies of the University of Helsinki.

A representative from online database provider CNKI (Tsinghua University) speaking at the Information Session on Online Chinese Legal Research in the University of Helsinki’s main library during Nordic China Law Week 2018

Summaries of the main events held during Nordic China Law Week 2018 can be found below.

Tuesday 17 April: Trade Governance of the Belt and Road Initiative: Economic Logic and Institutional Arrangements

Wednesday 18 April: Latest Developments in Chinese Intellectual Property Law

Wednesday 18 April: How Important is China’s Constitution in the Chinese Legal System?

Thursday 19 April: China Law Research Workshop

Friday 20 April: Nordic China Law Scholars Meeting

Monday 23 April: Information Session on Online Chinese Legal Research

Monday 23 April: Seminar: What People Management Practices Work Best in China Today? Cultural and Legal Perspectives

More information about the Week, including media inquiries, can be directed to the Coordinator of the Center, Stuart Mooney, on stuart.mooney (at)

Details on the research agenda and activities of the Finnish China Law Center can be found in the book, Finnish China Law Center: Its First Four Years (2017).


As part of Nordic China Law Week 2018, the Finnish China Law Center organized a China Law Research Workshop on Thursday 19 April 2018 at the University of Helsinki, one of the Finnish China Law Center’s 10 member institutions.

The Workshop, co-organized with the Faculty of Law of the University of Helsinki and supported by University of Helsinki Chinese Studies and the Confucius Institute of the University of Helsinki, provided an overview of how to approach Chinese legal research and comparative law research involving China.

Judge and professor Alan Neal hosted the event and gave presentations during the China Law Research Workshop on 19 April 2018 at the University of Helsinki.

Professor and judge Alan C. Neal moderated the event, which was opened by Director of the Finnish China Law Center, Professor Ulla Liukkunen, and the Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Helsinki, Professor Pia Letto-Vanamo.

This was the second time the Finnish China Law Center has held a China Law Research Workshop.

As was the case with the first Workshop, the event was attended by a diverse range of people. The over 80 registered attendees of more than 10 nationalities included university scholars, think tank researchers, diplomats, students, lawyers, those working in business (ranging from large multinational corporations to startups), entrepreneurs and government representatives.

Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Helsinki, Professor Pia Letto-Vanamo, opened the Workshop and also gave a presentation on the topic ‘Taking Account of History When Researching Contemporary Law’.

In what proved to be a full and engaging program, presentations were given by leading scholars based in the Nordic region, including Professor Ditlev Tamm of the University of Copenhagen who spoke on the topic ‘Nordic Reflections on Chinese Culture, the Rule of Law and Judicial Reform with Chinese Characteristics.’

In addition, three professors based in top-tier Chinese law schools traveled to Helsinki to contribute to the Workshop.

Professor Jin Haijun (Renmin University) speaking on ‘How to Approach Chinese IP Law and Private Law Theory’ at the China Law Workshop.

Professor Yan Dong (Acting Dean of Beijing Foreign Studies University) gave presentations on the sources of Chinese law and the Chinese legal system in an international context. Professor Jin Haijun (Renmin University) spoke on ‘How to Approach Chinese IP Law and Private Law Theory’. Assistant Associate Professor Yan Tian (Peking University) spoke on the topic ‘How to Approach Chinese Labour Law and Industrial Relations’.

Assistant Professor Yan Tian (Peking University) speaking on ‘How to Approach Chinese Labour Law and Industrial Relations’ at the China Law Research Workshop on 19 April 2018.

Professor Julie Yu-Wen Chen, Professor of Chinese Studies and Director of Confucius Institute at the Faculty of Arts at the University of Helsinki, discussed the relationship between culture and research involving contemporary China.

Professor Matti Nojonen (University of Lapland), Deputy Chair of the Finnish China Law Center, drew upon his experience in China and ongoing research when talking about the ‘Intersections of Economics, Business and the Law in China: Implications for Legal Research’.

Professor Matti Nojonen speaking at the China Law Research Workshop at the University of Helsinki on 19 April 2018.

Another well-received presentation at the Workshop was given by Post-doctoral Researcher Dr Yihong Zhang (University of Helsinki), who drew upon her academic background and experience as a corporate lawyer in China when speaking on the China’s Company law regime.

The Workshop also included a panel discussion on the practicalities of China law teaching and research, featuring Professor Jukka Viljanen (University of Tampere), Dr Harriet Lonka (University of Eastern Finland), Dr Wei Lu (Aalto University) and Dr Guilherme Vasconcelos Vilaca (University of Helsinki).

The Workshop ended with Rector’s Reception hosted by Dean Letto-Vanamo, which provided an excellent opportunity for speakers and participants to network and have in-depth discussions about the themes covered during the Workshop.

The Workshop was one of many exciting events organized as part of Nordic China Law Week 2018.

Tuesday 17 April: Trade Governance of the Belt and Road Initiative: Economic Logic and Institutional Arrangements

Wednesday 18 April: Latest Developments in Chinese Intellectual Property Law

Wednesday 18 April: How Important is China’s Constitution in the Chinese Legal System?

Friday 20 April: First Nordic China Law Scholars Meeting

Monday 23 April: Information Session on Online Chinese Legal Research

Monday 23 April: Seminar: What People Management Practices Work Best in China Today? Cultural and Legal Perspectives


Asianet online courses


The application period to apply for online courses in Spring 2018 offered through Finnish University Network for Asian Studies / Asianet, based in Finnish China Law Center member institution, University of Turku, ended on 24 November.


Within the course application courses were listed in two categories.

1. Asian Programme and Mini Minor

You can study BASIC COURSES offered in the Asian Programme such as Business in East and Southeast Asia or Contemporary East Asia. In the Asian Programme you have the possibility to do a 25 ECTS minor subject. These BASIC COURSES are also used as the foundation for the Mini Minor (10 ECTS to complete the minor), which lets you concentrate in more depth on one thematic aspect such as business or society.

Read more about the Asian Programme
and the Mini Minor

2. Master’s Level Courses

If you want to take individual courses you can apply for the various Master’s Level Courses offered by Asianet. This includes courses such as Introduction to Mongolian Politics and Society or Business Environment in Japan and South Korea. This spring we have two brand new courses: China-US relations – Asian Security and Chinese Working Places Cultures.

Read more about our Master’s Level Courses here:

Who Can Apply?

Students from Asianet member universities may take these courses for free. This includes Aalto University, the universities of Helsinki, Jyväskylä, Tampere, Turku, and Vaasa, and Åbo Akademi.

A student from a University of Applied Sciences may also apply if their university agrees to cover the course fees, or if the student is willing to cover the course fees themself.

Other individuals including students from non-member universities can apply to Asianet courses as independent self-paying students.

Read more about applying to Asianet courses from each relevant programme page.

Further information

If you have any questions about these studies, please contact Ulla Morelli, University of Turku (e-mail: