‘Law, Authoritarianism, and Democracy in Asia’ Symposium

Participants of the ‘Law, Authoritarianism, and Democracy in Asia’ Symposium.

The Centre for Asian Legal Studies (CALS) hosted the ‘Law, Authoritarianism, and Democracy in Asia’ Symposium on 12 and 13 December 2016 at NUS Law (Bukit Timah Campus). The symposium was jointly sponsored by CALS and The University of Hong Kong. Sixteen scholars from leading law schools around the globe who are experts specialising in law and politics studies in the selected jurisdictions, presented their research papers at the symposium.

Assistant Professor Weitseng Chen, Principal Investigator and Deputy Director of CALS, giving the introductory comments.

From left: Hualing Fu, Principal Investigator from The University of Hong Kong, giving the introductory comments and Associate Professor Dan Puchniak, Director of CALS, delivering the welcome address.

The symposium is part of a research project that aims to further the research and literature surrounding the concept of authoritarian legality. A number of Asian states are/were well-known for their authoritarian legality, a concept at odds with the liberal idea of the rule of law and democracy. How has a credible commitment to legality been made possible under authoritarian regimes in Asia? Under what conditions would the transformation of authoritarian legality take place and move towards a liberal, democratic system? The contributors of this project are to compare the past the current experiences of China, Hong Kong, S. Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, and Vietnam and produce a comprehensive, comparative scholarship on this timely topic.

From left: Koichi Nakano from Sophia University and Tom Ginsburg from The University of Chicago who was commenting on the paper presented.

From left: Tony Carty from Tsinghua University, David Campbell from Lancaster University and Yen-Tu Su from Institutum Iurisprudentiae, Academia Sinica.

Eva Pils from King’s College London raising a question for discussion.

Jacques deLisle from University of Pennsylvania sharing his views.

Thomas Kellogg from Open Society Foundation (centre) engaging in further discussions with Eva Pils from King’s College London (left) and Erik Mobrand from Seoul National University (right).

Back row (from left): David Campbell, Koichi Nakano, Associate Professor Dan Puchniak, Director of CALS, Erik Mobrand, Thomas Kellogg, Tom Ginsburg, Jacques deLisle and Hualing Fu
Front row (from left): Tony Carty, Han Zhu (observer from The University of Hong Kong), Yen-Tu Su, Jianlin Chen, Eva Pils, Adjuct Professor Kevin Tan, Assistant Professor Weitseng Chen, Deputy Director of CALS, and Richard Cullen


List of Contributors:

Ngoc Son Bui (Senior Research Fellow at CALS)
David Campbell (Lancaster University)
Tony Carty (Tsinghua University)
Jianlin Chen (The University of Hong Kong)
Assistant Professor Weitseng Chen (NUS Law)
Richard Cullen (The University of Hong Kong)
Jacques deLisle (University of Pennsylvania)
Associate Professor Michael Dowdle (NUS Law)
Hualing Fu (The University of Hong Kong)
Tom Ginsburg (The University of Chicago)
Thomas Kellogg (Open Society Foundation)
Erik Mobrand (Seoul National University)
Koichi Nakano (Sophia University)
Eva Pils (King’s College London)
Yen-Tu Su (Academic Sinica)
Adjunct Professor Kevin Tan (NUS Law)