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Dr. CHEN Lei (陳磊博士)

LLD (Stellenbosch) LLM (Aberdeen) LLB Honours (London) LLB (ECUPL)

Associate Professor

Associate Dean

Director of Centre for Chinese and Comparative Law (RCCL)

Contact Information

Office: P5415 AC1
Phone: 34427355
Fax: 34420190
Email: leichen@cityu.edu.hk

Research Interests

  • Property Law, Contract Law, Dispute Resolution, Chinese and Comparative Law
Lei CHEN's research areas focus on property law, contract law, Chinese private law, and dispute resolution (Mediation and Arbitration). His writings on these subjects appear in international referred law journals, edited volumes of multidisciplinary scholarship, and legal monagraphs. He obtained two LLB degrees in Chinese law and Common law respectively, together with two postgraduate degrees in two mixed jurisdictions--Scotland and South Africa. As a principal investigator, he obtained three General Research Funds (GRFs) from the Hong Kong Research Grant Committee and a number of other external research grants. Lei is a Fellow of European Law Institute, Member of International Academy of Comparative Law, Council member of Chinese Civil Law Association and Chinese Society of Comparative Law. He sits on the editorial boards of peer-reviewed journals and book series published by OUP, Hart, Springer and Brill.Lei has been a visiting professor/scholar in Columbia, KU Leuven, Emory, Cornell, National University of Singapore, Hawaii, Catholic University of Lyon, and IDC Herzliya, Israel.

Award and Achievement

  • 2011 “Elected Associate Member” International Academy of Comparative Law.
  • 2013 “Fellow” European Law Institute.
  • 2018 “Wenlan Professor 文澜讲座教授” Zhongnan University of Econimics and Law.
  • 2019 “Oriental Scholar visiting Professor 东方学者讲座教授-- East China University of Political Science and Law” Shanghai Education Commission.

Research Grant

  • Cross-boder Data Transfer among Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau, EXTERNAL CONTRACT-OUT RESEARCH PROJECT, Microsoft Int. Policy Research Grant, Amount: HKD $360,000, 2018 - 2019, Lei Chen (PI).
  • Comprehensive Analysis of Diversity of Legal Systems in Asia-Pacific Region and Convergence towards Establishment of Rule of Law, EXTERNAL CONTRACT OUT RESEARCH PROJECT, Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science& Tech日本文部科學省, Amount: JPY $3,500,000, 2017 - 2019, Co-PI (Lei Chen); Prof. Nobuyuki Sato (PI) .
  • The Availability of Specific Performance in Chinese Courts: An Empirical Assessment, GENERAL RESEARCH FUND (GRF), Research Grant Committee (RGC), Hong Kong Government, Estimated Amount: HKD $450,000, Jan 2016 - Jul 2018, Lei CHEN (PI) .
  • Understanding Property Transitions: The Emergence of Rural Land Markets in China, GENERAL RESEARCH FUND (GRF), Research Grant Committee (RGC), Hong Kong Government, Amount: HKD $495,000, Jan 2015 - Jun 2017, Lei CHEN (PI) .
  • Assessing Property Relations and Formalizing Condominium Ownership in China (COMPLETED), GENERAL RESEARCH FUND (GRF), Research Grant Committee (RGC), Hong Kong government, Amount: HKD $499,000, 1 Nov 2012 - 1 Nov 2015, Lei CHEN (PI) .
  • Contract Law in China and Europe: A Comparative Approach, EU-China Research Grant, 2011 - 2014, Co-I Jan Smits (PI).

Publication Show All Publications Show Prominent Publications


  • Chen, Lei. & Liu, Zhuang. (2020). Does the Jury Enhance Public Trust in the Judiciary. Global Policy. under review.
  • Chen, L. & Di Matteo, L. (2020). Is Specific Performance an Ordinary Remedy? A Comparative Analysis. Northwestern Journal of International Law and Business. 40. forthcoming .
  • Tang, yingmao. , Chen, lei. & Liu, Zhuang. (2020). Judicial Cadres and Authoritarian Transparency: Centralized Judiciary and its Limits.
  • Chen, Lei. & Wang, Hao. (2019). How readily Chinese Courts recognise and enforce foreign arbitral awards: An Empirical and Theoretical Inquiry. under review .
  • Chen, Lei. (2019). Looking at State-Society Relations in China through the Lens of Homeowners’ Association Movements. forthcoming.
  • Chen, Lei. (2019). Specific Performance as a Contractual Remedy in Chinese Courts: An Empirical Study. Chinese Journal of Comparative Law. 2019 7/1. 30 pages doi:SJR 2017 0.412 (Q2)
  • Chen, Lei. (2018). Debating Personality Rights Protection in China: A Comparative Outlook. European Review of Private Law. 26 (1). 31 - 56.
  • Chen, Lei. & Fitzpatrick, Daniel. (2018). Understanding Property Transitions: Registration Systems for Rural Land Markets in China. (forthcoming).
  • Chen, Lei. & Wang, Jia. (2018). Will Innovative Technology cause Innovative Legal Framework? Smart Contracts in China. European Review of Private Law. 26 (6).
  • Chen, Lei 陈磊. (2017). 超越边界:业主的权利限制之比较分析 (Beyond Boundary: A Comparative Analysis of Homeowner's Tradable Entitlements). 南京大学学报 (Journal of Nanjing University) CSSCI. 2017: 4.
  • Chen, Lei. & Sng, Gordon. (Oct 2014). Whither Adverse Possession in Hong Kong? A Comparative and Statistical Study. Conveyancer and Property Lawyer. 2014. 413 - 429.
  • Chen, Lei. (2014). Evolving Property Rights in China: Patterns and Dynamics of Condominium Governance. The Chinese Journal of Comparative Law (Oxford University Press). 2/1 (with M. Kielsgard). 21 - 42.
  • Chen, Lei. (2014). Land Registration, Property Rights, and Institutional Performance in China: Progress Achieved and Challenges Ahead. Hong Kong Law Journal. 44 (3). 841 - 864.
  • Chen, Lei. & Kielsgard, M. (2013). The Emergence of Private Property Law and its impacts on Human Rights. Asian-Pacific Law and Policy Journal. 15 (1). 94 - 134.
  • Chen, Lei. & Mostert, Hanri. (2011). The Dynamics of Constitutional Property Clauses in the Developing World: China and South Africa. Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law. 17 (4). 377 - 405.
  • Chen, lei. (Oct 2010). Pure Economic Loss: Common Law Perspectives (纯粹经济损失:普通法系的视角). Tsinghua Law Journal 清华法学. 2010. 106 - 117.
  • Chen, Lei. (2010). Private Property with Chinese Characteristics: A Critical Analysis of the Chinese Law on Property of 2007. European Review of Private Law. 18 (5). 983 - 1004.
  • Chen, Lei. (2010). The Developer’s Role in the Surging Chinese Condominium Housing: Through the Comparative Lens of the US System. Asia Pacific Law Review. 18 (2). 223 - 243.
  • Chen, Lei. (2010). The historical development of the Civil Law tradition in China: a private law perspective. The Legal History Review. 78. 159 - 181.
  • Chen, Lei. (2009). Reflections on the role of the managing agent in South African and Chinese condominium legislation. Journal of South African Law (TSAR) with C.G. van der Merwe. 2009. 22 - 38.
  • Chen, Lei. (2007). The New Chinese Property Code: A Giant Step Forward?. Electronic Journal of Comparative Law. 11 (2). 22 - 43.
  • Chen, lei. (2007). The Unavoidable Necessity of Formalizing Condominium Ownership in China: A Pilot Study. Asian Journal of Comparative Law (with H. Mostert). 2. 62 - 88.


  • Chen, Lei. (2020). Property Law in China. Cambridge University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. & Jassen, Andre. (2019). (eds) Dispute Resolution in China, Europe and World. Springer.
  • Chen, Lei. & DiMatteo, Larry. (2018). (Eds) Chinese Contract Law: Common Law and Civil Law Perspectives. Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press.
  • Howells, Geraint. , Twigg-Flesner, C. , Micklitz, H. & Chen, Lei. (2017). (Eds) Comparative Consumer Sales Law. Routledge.
  • Chen, Lei. , Oliphant, Ken. & Zhang, Pinghua. (2017). (Eds) The Legal Protection of Personality Rights in China and Europe. Brill.
  • Chen, Lei. & van Rhee, C.H. (2012). (Eds) Toward a Chinese Civil Code: Comparative and Historical Perspectives. Leiden & Boston:  Brill Nijhoff.
  • Chen, Lei. (2010). The Making of Chinese Condominium Law. Cambridge and Antewerp:  Intersentia, 214 pp.

Book Chapter

  • Chen, Lei. (2019). The Norm of Property’s Social Function: A Chinese Perspective. Babie, Paul, Viven-Wilksch, Jessica (Eds.) Duguit and the Social Obligation Norm of Property A Translation and Global Exploration. Springer.
  • Trakman, Leon. , Liu, Q. & Chen, L. (2019). INVESTOR-STATE ARBITRATION IN CHINA: A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE. Dispute Resolution in Asia and Beyond: Progress and Trends.
  • Wang, Jia. & Chen, Lei. (2019). How China Regulates Smart Contracts and Wires Online Platforms as Intermediaries. The Cambridge Handbook of Smart Contracts, Blockchain Technology and Digital Platforms. Cambridge University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. (2018). Codifying Personality Rights in China: Legislative Innovation or Scaremongering?”. Oliphant, Zhang, & Chen (eds) The Legal Protection of Personality Rights in China and Europe. Brill Publishers.
  • Chen, Lei. (2018). Changing Perceptions of Land Ownership in China: Between the Socialist Heritage and Liberal Market. Pip Nicholson (et al) Socialist Law in Socialist East Asia. Cambridge University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. & Howells, Geraint. (2017). Consumer Sales Law in Hong Kong. Howells Michlitz (et al) Comparative Consumer Sales Law. Palgrave.
  • Chen, Lei. (2017). Damages and Specific Performance in Chinese Contract Law. Larry DiMatteo & Lei Chen (eds), Chinese Contract Law: Perspectives. Cambridge University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. (2017). Relaxations to Contractual Privity and the Need for Third Party Rights in Chinese Contract Law. Mindy Chen-Wishart, Alex Loke & Stefan Vogenauer (eds) Formation of Contract and Third Party Beneficiaries: Studies in the Contract Laws of Asia. Oxford University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. (2016). Availability of Specific Remedies in Chinese Contract Law. Chen-Wishart, Loke, & Ong (eds)Studies in the Contract Laws of Asia Remedies for Breach of Contract. (pp. 21 - 40). Oxford. Oxford University Press.
  • Chen, Lei. (2016). The Changing Landscape of Condominium Laws and Urban Governance in China. Private Communities and Urban Governance: Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives. Springer.
  • Chen, Lei. (2014). The Legal and Institutional Analysis of Land Expropriation in China. Fu Hualing & John Gillespie (eds), Resolving Land Disputes in East Asia. (pp. 59 - 85). Cambridge. Cambridge University Press.
  • Chen, lei. (2013). Civil Justice Reform in Hong Kong. in C.H. van Rhee & Fu Yulin (eds), Litigation in China and Europe: Essays on the Role of Judges and Parties. (pp. 71 - 126). Springer.
  • Chen, Lei. (2012). 100 Years of the Chinese Property Law: Looking Back and Thinking forward. CHEN L, & RHEE C.H. van (eds). Towards A Chinese Civil Code. (pp. 87 - 108). Martinus Nijhoff Publishers (Brill).
  • Chen, lei. (2012). Contextualizing Legal Transplant: China and Hong Kong. P.G. Monateri (ed) Methods of Comparative Law. (pp. 192 - 212). Elgar Edward.
  • Chen, Lei. (2011). A Structural Analysis of Chinese Mortgage Law. H Mostert & M De Waal (eds) Essays in Honour of CG van der Merwe. (pp. 395 - 316). Lexisnexis.

External Services

Public Service

  • 5 Feb 2019 - 5 Mar 2019, Visiting Professor , Faculty of Law, KU Leuven .Belgium .
  • 22 Dec 2018 - 20 Jan 2019, Visiting Professor , IDC Herzliya.Israel.
  • 23 Nov 2018 - 30 May 2019, Visiting Professor , Richard Williamson Law School, University of Hawaii Monoa.United States.
  • 2016 - Now, Fellow, International Academy of Belt and Road.
  • 2012 - Now, Review examiner, PCLL Conversion exam board.Hong Kong.

Professional Activity

  • 2017 - 2019, Council Member, Chinese Comparative Law Society.
  • 2016 - 2019, Council Member, Chinese Civil Law Society.
  • 2014 - 2019, Fellow, Hong Kong Institute of Arbitrators.

Community Service

  • 2013 - 2019, Fellow, Center for Chinese Law, University of Hong Kong.

Service in CityU

Research / Thesis Supervision

  • 2016 - Now, 3 research students, PhD supervisor .
  • 2014 - Now, 7 JSD students, JSD supervisors.

Editorial Board Membership

  • (1) Chinese Journal of Comparative Law (Oxford University Press)
    (2) European Journal of Comparative Law and Governance (Brill)
    (3) Comparative Legal History (Oxford Hart);
    (4) China-EU Law Journal (Springer)

Last update date : 16 Aug 2019