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The China Law Center Co-Hosts Workshop on Land Dispute Resolution Systems

On March 28 and 29, the China Law Center co-hosted a workshop on land dispute resolution with the Administrative Law Research Center of China’s National School of Administration (CNSA) and the Ministry of Land and Resources.  The workshop was held in Beijing.   

China’s economic boom has led to sharp rises in land prices, large-scale urban re-development, and widespread conversion of farmland for industrial and other commercial uses.  The resulting displacement of farmers and urban residents has resulted in a growing number of disputes over land and compensation.  The central government highlighted the critical importance of land issues in its first major policy document for 2008, known as the “2008 No. 1 Document.”

Participants at the Beijing workshop compared takings procedures and land dispute resolution mechanisms in the United States and China.  Discussion at the workshop highlighted the importance of public participation and transparency early in the takings process, the need for neutral valuators and dispute adjudicators, and the value of exploring alternative dispute resolution mechanisms. 
 
The workshop brought together over thirty leading Chinese experts and officials representing key government departments.  The delegation of foreign experts included Lisa Bova-Hiatt, Deputy Chief of the New York City Law Department; Craig Call, Executive Director of the Utah Land Institute and former Utah State Property Rights Ombudsman; Jennifer Gee, Administrative Law Judge for the U.S. Department of Labor; Thomas Merrill, Professor of Law at Columbia University; and Janet Myers, Senior Attorney Advisor in the Office of Chief Counsel for the Federal Highway Administration of the U.S. Department of Transportation.  China Law Center experts Jamie Horsley, Keith Hand, Philip Chen, and Katherine Wilhelm also took part in the workshop.
 
For a detailed summary of the Workshop in the journal China Land, a publication of the Ministry of Land and Resources, click here.  For additional Chinese coverage of the Workshop, see the Ministry of Land and Resources, the Chongqing Bureau of Land & Resources and Land Management Public Information, and the Ningbo Bureau of Land and Resources.