Copyright and International Negotiations - An Engine of Free Expression in China?

by Ge Chen (Cambridge University Press)

Copyright and International Negotiations provides a historical study of the development of Chinese copyright law in terms of China's contemporary political economy and the impact that international copyright law has had. The analysis shows how China's copyright system is intertwined with censorship and international copyright law and how this has affected freedom of expression. China still enforces an old censorship regime that clamps down on free expression despite a modern system of copyright rules which should function as an engine of free expression.

The book explores the development and architecture of Chinese copyright law in parallel with international copyright law, clarifies China's nuanced patterns of the control of free expression through copyright law, and identifies a breakthrough for neutralising the impact of China's censorship policies through copyright law.



  • Examines a topic rarely dealt with in Chinese copyright law scholarship, providing an overall understanding of Chinese copyright law

  • The analysis of copyright and freedom of expression presents a new understanding of this relationship

  • Examining the historical development of China's copyright law exposes readers to the external influences on Chinese and international copyright law


George G. Chen

Research Associate

George G. Chen is an expert on China’s judicial system and legal policies. He is the author of “Copyright and International Negotiations: An Engine of Free Expression in China?,” a monograph published in 2017 by the Cambridge University Press. He has advised the Chinese and European governments on a variety of legal projects within the framework of the Sino-EU-Dialogue on the State of Rule of Law. Chen has a PhD in law from the University of Göttingen. He worked as a postdoctoral research associate at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), the Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Law (CIPIL), and the Wolfson College of the University of Cambridge. He was a Visiting Academic of the PCMLP based at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies of the University of Oxford and a research fellow and Konrad Adenauer scholar at the University of Göttingen.




The  Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS)is a Stiftung Mercatorinitiative. Established in 2013, MERICS is a Berlin-based institute for contemporary and practical research into China.