Professor Jingchen Zhao Inaugural Lecture

Promoting more socially responsible corporations through board accountability in China

Jingchen Zhao
Public lectures

While the notion of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has now begun to feature in company law in China, the prospect of achieving it through regulation has been criticised either for being fundamentally flawed or for being mere window-dressing in the domain of corporate law.

Professor Zhao proposes a new concept of corporate social accountability (CSA or gongsi shehui wenze zhi) which is capable of sharpening the regulatory rigidity of CSR. The lecture considers the common nature, scope and trajectory of CSA and board accountability (the wenze system in China) and explores how CSR might be more appropriately and effectively applied in corporate law.

  • From: Thursday 4 April 2019, 6 pm
  • To: Thursday 4 April 2019, 7.30 pm
  • Registration: 5.30 pm
  • Location: Newton building, Main Entrance, Nottingham Trent University, City Campus, Burton Street, Nottingham, NG1 4BU
  • Booking deadline: Wednesday 3 April 2019, 12.00 pm

Event details

Promoting more socially responsible corporations through board accountability in China

While the notion of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has now begun to feature in company law in China, the prospect of achieving it through regulation has been criticised either for being fundamentally flawed or for being mere window-dressing in the domain of corporate law. This lecture aims to unpick this heated discussion, by way of addressing the problems that arise from implementing CSR in corporate law. Professor Zhao will also assess how the term CSR could be refined and elevated through board accountability mechanisms with a primary focus on China.

Professor Zhao proposes a new concept of corporate social accountability (CSA or gongsi shehui wenze zhi) which is capable of sharpening the regulatory rigidity of CSR. The lecture considers the common nature, scope and trajectory of CSA and board accountability (the wenze system in China) and explores how CSR might be more appropriately and effectively applied in corporate law. While CSR provides an ethical dimension to Chinese company law, CSA could fill the gap left by the lack of any effective regulatory framework for companies, as well as the inaccessibility and underdevelopment of mechanisms for redress and company liability regarding social and environmental concerns. It is argued that this new conceptual framework identifies new pragmatic routes for CSR enforcement, and that its introduction  would be beneficial in strengthening voluntary initiatives for CSR.

Professor Jingchen Zhao, Nottingham Law School

Jingchen is a Professor of Law and Co-director of the Centre for Business and Insolvency Law at Nottingham Law School. He is the Athena Swan Champion and Grant Champion for the Law School. Jingchen holds a doctorate from the University of Manchester. He has taught at several UK universities, most recently at the University of Leeds.

Jingchen’s research specialism is corporate law, corporate social responsibility and corporate governance. His research specialism also extends to interdisciplinary areas such as law and finance, modern slavery and supply chain management. His most recent research has focused on board accountability, shareholder litigation, regulating corporate social responsibility and extraterritorial attempts at addressing sustainability challenges.

His peer-reviewed articles have been published in prestigious journals including Legal Studies, the Hong Kong Law Journal, the Northwestern Journal of International Law and Business, the Journal of Corporate Law Studies, the European Business Organization Law Review, the Journal of Business Law and the Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly. He is the author of Corporate Social Responsibility in Contemporary China (Edward Elgar 2014) in the ‘Globalisation, Corporation and the Law’ series.

His research has been supported by research grants from the ESRC, the Social Science Foundation of China and the Natural Science Foundation of China. He is currently involved in a three-year project funded jointly by the ESRC Newton Fund and the Natural Science Foundation of China entitled ‘Boosting Growth through Strengthening Investor and Creditor Protection in China: How China can Learn from the UK Experience’.

Programme

5.30 pmRegistration and welcome refreshments
6.00 pmInaugural lecture
7.00 pmDrinks reception
7.30 pmEvent close

Booking information

This event is free to attend. To book your place, click the Reserve your place button at the top of the page.

Location details

Room/Building:

Newton building, Main Entrance

Address:

Nottingham Trent University
City Campus
Burton Street
Nottingham
NG1 4BU

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