Case law Chinese style–where is it going? | Supreme People's Court Monitor:
by Susan Finder
On 6 January 2015, case law Chinese style (案例指导制度) made the headlines of the People’s Court Daily and the Supreme People’s Court’s (the Court’s) websites, because the Supreme People’s Court president, Zhou Qiang provided an introduction to a book that the Court is publishing on guiding cases. Universities such as Yale, Stanford, and the City University of Hong Kong as well as institutions such as the European Union have held training programs with Court staff on the case method. Numerous academic conferences have been held on the topic in China. The Communist Party leadership expressed its approval for case law in the 4th Plenum Decision in the following phrase:
Strengthen and standardize judicial interpretation and case guidance, and unify standards of applicable law (加强和规范司法解释和案例指导，统一法律适用标准).
As discussed in this blogpost, the Court’s October, 2013 judicial reform plan flagged the importance of case law in this phrase:
“Expand fully the important role of guiding cases and cases for reference”.
This blogpost will look at how the Court leadership understands Chinese “case law” and how it sees case law to be useful to the judiciary.
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