LAW5455 - Chinese law and innovation policies - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Chief examiner(s)

Mr Max Parasol Personal ProfilePersonal Profile (

Quota applies

Postgraduate programs are based on a model of small group teaching and therefore class sizes need to be restricted.

Unit guides


City (Melbourne)

  • Term 4 2019 (On-campus)


This unit aims to equip future cross-cultural lawyers and technology policy-makers with the ability to understand the relationship between business and technology laws and issues of civil society in China. The unit focuses on China's complex internet and cyber security laws and innovation policies, including China's widespread roll out of artificial intelligence pilots such as facial recognition and self-driving cars.

Students undertake a collaborative research project (a mock business venture) that evaluates Chinese laws and regulations as to their effectiveness, responsiveness and coherence.

Classes will focus on preparedness for practice in an international legal environment or in a role formulating emerging technology policies. Classes include class exercises and interactive seminars.

Students will gain an overview of the Chinese legal system while focusing on the most important technological issues facing China and the world. China is now the vanguard on many of these complex legal and regulatory issues such as artificial intelligence policy and therefore merits our immediate attention.


At the successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  • describe how the institutions and nature of the Chinese legal system shape the content and administration of the law;
  • articulate the connection between the rule of law, civil society and emerging technologies.
  • examine the role of law in facilitating the formation, operation and regulation of private legal entities, and the commercial significance of law's role in this respect;
  • observe the associated challenges to civil society caused by China's rapid technological development and appraise how the legal system responds to civil society issues;
  • evaluate Chinese laws and regulations as to effectiveness, responsiveness and coherence;
  • select the appropriate research tools to design and implement an efficient research strategy to answer research questions; and
  • utilise skills of comparative legal analysis to objectively analyse a foreign legal environment.


Collaborative research project (a mock business venture) that evaluates whether Chinese laws and regulations are effective, responsive and coherent (3,375 words): 45%

One take-home examination (2,625 words): 35%

Class participation which includes active participation in class exercises 20%

Workload requirements

24 contact hours per semester (either intensive, semi-intensive or semester long, depending on the Faculty resources, timetabling and requirements)