Law Without Order in Chinese Corporate Governance Institutions

30 Nw. J. Int'l L. & Bus. 131 (2010)

69 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2008 Last revised: 25 Jul 2014

See all articles by Donald C. Clarke

Donald C. Clarke

George Washington University - Law School

Date Written: 2010


The substantive norms of Chinese corporate governance have been studied extensively inside and outside China. Yet much less attention has been paid to the Chinese institutional environment that determines whether and how far those norms will be made meaningful. While complaints about general lack of enforcement are common, less common are analyzes that concretely tie institutional capacity to specific enforcement problems. This article aims to fill that gap. It surveys a number of state and non-state channels for the enforcement of corporate governance rules and standards in China, from markets to regulatory bodies, looking at the specific capacities of each. It concludes by finding that while the state for political reasons prefers to leave enforcement to state regulatory bodies, its repression of civil society institutions is so severe that even a modest relaxation could have substantial benefits.

Note: This article was previously uploaded to the same SSRN location as a working paper entitled "The Ecology of Corporate Governance in China".

Keywords: China, People's Republic of China, corporate governance, institutions

JEL Classification: K22, K40

Suggested Citation

Clarke, Donald C., Law Without Order in Chinese Corporate Governance Institutions (2010). 30 Nw. J. Int'l L. & Bus. 131 (2010), Available at SSRN: or

Donald C. Clarke (Contact Author)

George Washington University - Law School ( email )

2000 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20052
United States


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