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China: A powerhouse and resistor of restorative justice


Yan (Ian) Zhang


Online Event


Thursday, 9 June, 2022 - 12:30 to 13:30

China has the largest and most diverse restorative justice (RJ) programs in the world, which, however, is “the elephant in the room” for the social movement for RJ.

This thesis contributes to unveiling the puzzle of this RJ project of challenging scale. It investigates the restorative programs universally implemented in the Chinese criminal justice system (i.e., people’s mediation, public order mediation and criminal reconciliation) and an indigenous mediation (De Gu mediation) particularly practiced by the ethnic Yi people in southwest China to represent this aspect of Chinese diversity.

The contradiction that China is both a powerhouse and resistor of RJ reform makes it the world’s largest RJ experiment by which RJ researchers and practitioners can gain a more complex understanding of the institutionalization of RJ in mainstream justice systems and variegation in the character of RJ penetration in civil society.

This seminar is Yan’s final presentation of his doctoral candidature.

About the speaker

Yan Zhang is a current Ph.D. scholar at RegNet ANU. His major research interests are restorative justice, criminal justice in China, and qualitative research methods. Between 2012-2015, Yan served as the secretary of the Asian Criminological Society (ACS). Since 2022, he has been successfully elected the Executive Board Member of the ACS (2022-2024). Yan has also served as the managing editor of the Asian Journal of Criminology since 2012. His publications have appeared in the Justice Quarterly and the International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, among others.

This event will be delivered online via Zoom only.

Image credit: Image of a statue of Lady Justice, a judge’s gavel and a flag of China by Marco Verch on flickr, (CC BY 2.0)




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