The Development of Comparative Law in Japan

in Reimann, Mathias; Zimmermann, Reinhard, (eds), 'The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law', Second Edition (Oxford University Press, 2019), pp. 201-227

Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 18/69

28 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2018 Last revised: 26 May 2020

See all articles by Luke R. Nottage

Luke R. Nottage

The University of Sydney - Faculty of Law; The University of Sydney - Australian Network for Japanese Law; University of Wollongong

Date Written: November 1, 2018

Abstract

Japan has a long and successful history of carefully investigating and adapting foreign laws to build up its own legal system. Japan has also exported its law, through colonisation in North Asia in the first half of the 20th century, and through legal technical assistance especially in Southeast Asia since the 21st century (as explained in Part II of this paper). Japanese law has also impacted on comparative lawyers from abroad, beginning from the 1960s when Japan’s economy boomed, and continuing from the 1990s as economic stagnation engendered a raft of law reforms (Part III). This has generated a sophisticated comparative law literature and practice related to Japan, which has also influenced contemporary scholarship on other Asian legal systems.

Comparative law research continues to be a cornerstone for most law reform projects within Japan, with academics playing significant roles. However, law reform processes have become more complex over the last two decades, as illustrated in amendments to consumer and civil law as well as corporate governance regimes (Part IV). Further challenges for comparative law studies in Japan arise from persistent pressures on legal academia despite – or perhaps because of – major reforms to legal education introduced in 2004, and linked to an ambitious justice system reform program (Part V).

Keywords: comparative law, Asian law, Japanese law, law reform, private law, consumer law, corporate governance, judicial system, legal education

JEL Classification: K10, K30, K33

Suggested Citation

Nottage, Luke R., The Development of Comparative Law in Japan (November 1, 2018). in Reimann, Mathias; Zimmermann, Reinhard, (eds), 'The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law', Second Edition (Oxford University Press, 2019), pp. 201-227, Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 18/69, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3276469

Luke R. Nottage (Contact Author)

The University of Sydney - Faculty of Law ( email )

New Law Building, F10
The University of Sydney
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

The University of Sydney - Australian Network for Japanese Law

Room 640, Building F10, Eastern Avenue
Sydney, NSW 2006
Australia

University of Wollongong ( email )

Northfields Avenue
Wollongong, New South Wales 2522
Australia

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