The Dynamism of China’s Civil Litigation System

  • Margaret WooEmail author
Part of the Ius Gentium: Comparative Perspectives on Law and Justice book series (IUSGENT, volume 48)


Globally, civil procedure is the locus of dynamic experiments taking place under the radar screen of most political and social reformers. Viewed as technical answers to perceived increases in civil caseload and overburdened judges, civil procedure nevertheless contains within its rules clues about differing visions of civil justice and how that justice can be delivered. In China, civil procedure reforms take the form of the recent 2012 amendments to the Chinese civil procedure code. While changes to the Chinese civil procedure code are said to be motivated by concerns of efficiency and economy, how these reforms take shape in China, as in elsewhere, are arguably part and parcel of a country’s national identity. And China’s civil dispute resolution reflects its identity of “order over freedom, duty over rights, collective over individual interests.” (Shao-Chuan Leng & Hungdah Chiu, Criminal Justice in Post Mao China: Analysis and Documents 171 (State University of New York Press, 1985) But perversely, in the effort to preserve “order over freedom, duty over rights, collective over individual interests,” recent procedural reforms in China may undermine the raison d’etre of the procedure itself, with the potential to discourage rather than encourage the state’s goal of a “harmonious society.”


Supra Note Chinese Communist Party Civil Procedure Harmonious Society Supreme People 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of LawNortheastern University School of LawBostonUSA

Personalised recommendations