The 2019 THU-Toronto-HKU Annual Forum, co-organized by Tsinghua University School of Law, University of Toronto Faculty of Law and University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law was successfully held at Tsinghua Leo KoGuan Building during May 31 to June 1, 2019. Nearly 20 professors from the three universities attended this forum.
During the opening ceremony, Dean SHEN Weixing of Tsinghua Law School, Dean Edward Iacobucci of Toronto Law School and Associate Dean Simon Young of the University of Hong Kong gave welcome speeches separately.
Dean SHEN expressed his warm welcome to all the guests and pointed out that the aim of holding this annual conference is to build a platform to promote academic exchanges among faculties from the three universities. It is of great significance for scholars getting together to discuss various cutting-edge legal issues and share their point of views.
Dean Edward Iacobucci expressed his gratitude to Tsinghua Law School for the long-lasting support to the Forum. He believed that more constructive ideas on legal research, teaching and practice would be initiated through communications.
Associate Dean Simon Young was also thankful for Tsinghua Law School hosting the Forum. He emphasized the importance of these academic exchanges and expected more collaborations among the three universities in the future.
There were four sessions on the first day: “Constitutional Law”, “Labour Law & Contract Law”, “Economic & Commercial Law” and “Administrative Law”.
Dean Edward Iacobucci from Toronto University moderated the “Constitutional Law” session.
Professor WANG Zhenmin of Tsinghua Law School shared his views on the practice of “One Country, Two Systems” in Hong Kong SAR. The legal practice in the last decades has proved that the Constitution of PRC and the Hong Kong Basic Law has been interacting with each other properly and guaranteed the high degree of autonomy in Hong Kong.
Associate Professor CHENG Jie from Tsinghua Law School introduced “Modernity, Identity and Debates of Constitutionalism in China”. She explained the history and current situation of the development of constitutionalism in China. She argued that due to its unique political and cultural context, China might come across difficulties in fully implementing constitutionalism.
Dean SHEN hosted the second session on “Labour Law & Contract Law”.
Professor Kerry Rittich of Toronto University presented her latest research results on International Labour Law. She called for attentions to issues concerning cross-border labour market governance and legal protections, such as whether labour law could ensure the rights and benefits of people working abroad and whether labour contracts should be signed between multi-national enterprises.
Professor Catherine Valcke from Toronto University compared the binding force of contracts under civil law and common law systems and examined several key elements like contract performance, breach and remedies under the two systems.
Professor HAN Shiyuan from Tsinghua University explored “the Developments of Contract Law by the Supreme People’s Court (SPC) in China”. He emphasized the important role of the SPC in developing Contract Law by analyzing judicial interpretations and guiding cases of SPC.
Professor Simon Young from the University of Hong Kong led the discussions on “Economic & Commercial Law” session.
Dean Edward Iacobucci discussed “Present and Future Frictions in the Multi-Jurisdictional Review of Global Mergers”. He put forwarded that besides the changes of Western traditional policy and regulation, the growing Chinese influence on antitrust also posed challenges to the legal system of Global Mergers.
Associate Professor SHEN Zhaohui from Tsinghua Law School presented his comparative study on “the Role and Future of Self-Regulation in the Takeover Markets: A Tale of the Two Models of Committee/Panel in the U.K. and China”. He explained the different practices of Self-Regulation in Takeover Markets in the U.K. and China.
Professor WANG Hongliang of Tsinghua Law School moderated the final session on “Administrative Law”.
Professor Simon Young focused on the “Accountability of Law Enforcement Agents under Hong Kong’s Basic Law”. He illustrated examples like the repetitive ticket-checking of the high-speed train traveling between the Mainland and Hong Kong to analyze the problems of Basic Law enforcement.
Professor Richard Wu from the University of Hong Kong studied on “Needs Satisfaction, Motivation and Well-Being of Future Lawyers in Hong Kong and Implications for Legal Professionalism Development for Chinese Societies”. He concluded that the healthy development of legal profession needs a systematic reform of administrative system.
On the second day of the Forum, Dean SHEN Weixing and Associate Dean CUI Guobin representing Tsinghua Law School had a round table with all the guests from Toronto University and the University of Hong Kong to discuss future collaborations among the three universities.
Dean Shen suggested more cooperation on teaching, academic research and Joint-Degree Programs. He introduced the Institute for Studies on Artificial Intelligence and Law of Tsinghua Law School, which focuses on Computational Law studies with an aim to solve more legal issues in the IT field. He expected that faculties from Toronto University and HKU would work together to conduct inter-disciplinary study between Law and Technology. Dean SHEN also explored the possibilities of creating Joint-Degree Programs among the three universities. Finally, he sincerely invited experts and scholars from Toronto and HKU to participate in the upcoming 2019 International Forum on Computational Law.
Dean Edward Iacobucci agreed with the suggestions. He proposed to establish a Collaboration Committee among the three universities to enhance future cooperation. In his opinion, more communications mean more chances to cooperate.
Associate Dean Simon Young showed his approval on the ideas of collaborations. In 2020, the University of Hong Kong will host the THU-Toronto-HKU Annual Forum. Dean Young hoped that more professors would attend the Forum and promote the collaboration among the three universities.