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Academic Community


The Peter A. Allard School of Law at The University of British Columbia enjoys a leading reputation in interdisciplinary research in areas including trade and human rights, dispute resolution, cross-cultural studies and Asian law. The Allard School of Law’s Asian Legal Studies Program has close ties with counterparts across Asia, thus providing a strong foundation for collaboration with Japan’s Waseda University and the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences in China. UBC’s Institute of Asian Research (IAR) is widely recognized as the leading research facility of its kind in Canada. IAR members have powerful networks across the Asia Pacific region, including important links to trade and human rights organizations and have a strong record of cooperation with Gadjah Madah University in Indonesia and with India’s Delhi School of Economics and Indian Statistical Institute. As Professor in the Allard School of Law and former Director of IAR, Principal Investigator, Dr. Pitman B. Potter, is well-positioned to coordinate activities between these units. Dr. Potter is an internationally recognized expert on China, with particular experience in human rights and international trade dispute resolution. He has over twenty years of personal and professional relationships with the collaborators across Canada and Asia. Other Canadian team members are similarly situated to achieve research results and to enable effective dissemination to organizations such as the Canadian government and NGO’s. York University’s interdisciplinary Centre for Public Policy and Law under the direction of co-investigator Dr. Lesley Jacobs plays a key role as the locus for the Canada Research Team. Dr. Jacobs’ expertise in interdisciplinary studies of legal compliance behavior and his contributions to our Phase I project confirm the value of this linkage to the project as a whole.


Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences (SASS) Law Institute in Shanghai is a leading policy research institute in China on issues of trade and human rights and enjoys close ties to the Shanghai municipal government. The team leaders will be Dr. Gu Xiaorong, Director and Associate Director of the Law Institute. SASS has been particularly helpful in collaborative research with Allard School and the Institute of Asian Research since 1993. SASS has been our China partner in Phase I and in 2007 was the local partner in the IAR’s Summer Institute China Program. SASS will take particular responsibility for the China research activities, with support available as need from other Shanghai institutions such as the East China University of Politics and Law and the China Executive Leadership Academy Pudong (CELAP).


In light of the importance of local cultural norms in conducting research on attitudes and practices in Japan, local researchers are essential to the success of the research project. Dr. Yoshitaka Wada, Professor of Legal Sociology at Waseda University, directs research in dispute resolution projects in Japan and in connection with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). A leading scholar in international and comparative law, Dr. Wada is an essential participant in the project and will lead the Japan country team. Participation by Waseda University will also facilitate access by project scholars to other Japan-based trade and human rights dispute resolution specialists for spin-off research projects, so as to expand the project network.

India and Indonesia

Just as our initial MCRI project built long term collaborative relationships between the institutions in our research network, this proposed project will build on these collaborations and extend them to Indonesia and India. In particular we are partnering with Gadjah Madah University in Indonesia and the Delhi School of Economics and the Indian Statistical Institute in India, and anticipate that this project will produce sufficiently exciting research findings that long term collaboration will result.


Melbourne University has particular strength in dispute resolution and Asian law, with long-standing personal and institutional ties to UBC. Professor Sarah Biddulph is an internationally recognized specialist on trade and human rights issues involving China.

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

Asia Pacific Dispute Resolution

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