Intellectual Property Law

Legal Transplant for Innovation and Creativity – A Sino-Finnish Comparative Study on the Governance of Intellectual Property Rights

Legal Transplant for Innovation and Creativity – A Sino-Finnish Comparative Study on the Governance of Intellectual Property Rights” (TranSIP) was a comparative law research project which undertook collaborative research in academic institutes in China and Finland. In addition to Chinese partners, including the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Institute of Law and Shenzhen University, the consortium extensively cooperated with other institutions worldwide: the Max Planck Institute for Competition and Innovation (Germany), the Frankfurt Goethe-Universität (Germany), John Marshall Law School (USA), Texas A&M Law School (USA), Nagoya University (Japan), Hokkaido University (Japan), Tsinghua University, Beijing Institute of Technology, Hanyang University (South Korea) and IP KEY – EUIPO. The project was conducted during 2013-2015.

Chinese IP law was going through a transformation due to international conventions based on Anglo-European IP norms, providing a rich source of legal transplants, but these may create tension in the receiving legal system and may work differently from in the source country. Therefore, this process needed to be critically analysed from the perspective of comparative law.

The core of the research explored the interaction of law and changes in society, through regulation of economic activities as observed in the development of Chinese intellectual property laws. In particular, the project explored use of legal transplants as a method of inducing societal and behavioural changes, in particular to promote innovation and creativity in China. In terms of outcomes, first, by testing the theory of legal transplants, the project found an explanation for European IP law’s influence on Chinese law. However, observation showed that China simultaneously takes the role of being an IP norm taker (or a recipient of a legal transplant) as well as a norm maker. Second, the project compared several significant doctrines and concepts, norms in Chinese and European IP Law: copyright law, patent law as well as trademark law, also in the context of implementing national and regional IPR strategies. Third, the research project looked into practices and focused on the transformation in governance of practices and enforcement of IP rights in China and Europe.


Nari Lee, Niklas Bruun, Li Mindge (eds) (2016) Governance of Intellectual Property in China and Europe. Edward Eldgar Publishing, Cheltenham. Available on the publisher website.

Nari Lee, Guido Westkamp, Ansgar Ohly (eds) (2014) Intellectual Property, Unfair Competition and Publicity: Convergences and Development. Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham. Available on the publisher website.

Principal Investigator

Nari Lee
Professor of Intellectual Property Law
Dept of Accounting and Commercial Law,
HANKEN School of Economics,
POB 479, 00101 Helsinki, Finland