9th Annual Conference: Making, Enforcing and Accessing the Law
15th and 16th November 2014
Xuanming Pan, Sirui Han, Pilar-Paz Czoske, Marco Otten, Meng Fang 
The 2014 Annual Conference of the European China Law Studies Association (ECLS) was hosted by the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) on the 15th and 16th of November. The two-day conference gathered the intellectual acumen of many academic and professional leaders from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Macau, mainland China, Netherlands, Singapore, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States, to name but a few. With reference to China’s ongoing reform, the conference brought together academics, professionals, members of the judiciary, policy makers, and the like, with their collective knowledge and expertise to engage open communication with the themes of “making, enforcing and accessing the law”. Founded in 2006, the ECLS seeks to establish a forum for the global exchange of ideas and academic collaboration in Chinese legal studies. As the first ECLS annual conference held outside Europe, this year’s gathering not only benefited from geographic proximity to China, but was also enhanced by the cultural richness of Hong Kong, one of the world’s greatest cosmopolitan cities.
The conference opened in a gala ceremony with addresses from Benjamin Wah (Provost, CUHK), Christopher Gane (Dean, Faculty of Law, CUHK), and Knut Pissler (Chairman, ECLS). They extended warmest welcome to all the speakers and participants for their preparations to introduce and to discuss the themes that shaped the two-day conference. As highlighted, the Chinese legal system has been involved in global interactions between various civil law and common law traditions. The emergence of China as a leading economic and political power has been measured and debated in a variety of transnational spheres, whereas the genius of Chinese law and its actual practices remain largely unknown to the Western world. The sessions of the conference covered a wide range of pressing issues, from theories concerning the rule of law and judicial reform, through subject matters that include company law, international sales law, labour law and criminal law. The conference also provided a platform for academic deliberation on the recent Fourth Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee. The broadness of the topics has been one of the core characteristics of the ECLS annual conferences, as has their emphasis on an interdisciplinary approach to these topics.