1. Conference Content

The last decade has seen the emergence of two new critical dynamics in the international economic arena – the rise of China as a great power alongside the increased inclusion and role of Africa’s economies. Specifically relevant for this conference is the international economic legal relations emerging between China and many African countries. Those legal relations span everything from agreements and the regulation of: trade in goods and services; Chinese foreign direct investment in Africa; Governmental and regional bank finance projects; International intellectual property; and all other parts of the field of international economic law. As a new and increasingly important part of the international economic legal order there is much to be gained in our understandings of these new dynamics in international economic law (“IEL”). This is especially the case if scholars that study in relevant areas, especially Chinese and African IEL scholars, are able to share their research and ideas.

This conference will provide such opportunities – carefully integrating scholarly presentations with networking opportunities that would ideally lead to future research collaborations. Accordingly, there will be two days of research presentations (keynote lectures, paper presentations, and poster displays) on the conference theme as well as one day of networking available via group Safari to one of the world’s great wildlife parks.

We therefore are seeking proposals for papers, panels and posters for this conference. The Conference Theme will be “The Emergence of New and Dynamic China-Africa Economic Relationships: International Economic Law Perspectives”. This is a broad theme that provides flexibility for paper, panel and poster proposals that:

  • Cover the broad areas of international economic law (“IEL”); and
  • Directly involve Africa-China economic relations.

For purposes of this conference, IEL means the international/transnational dimensions of: trade law; investment law (including investment arbitration); finance and monetary law; intellectual property rights law; competition/antitrust law; labour migration law; and development law.

It may also include:

The intersection of other fields of law and these IEL fields (e.g., environmental regulation and trade law as it impacts China-Africa economic relations); or

Interdisciplinary approaches to IEL and the region (e.g., an economic analysis of the international investment law of Uganda as it impacts China-Africa economic relations);

Doctoral (e.g., PhD/SJD/JSD) candidates that are not already academics (lecturers, assistant professors, etc.) may only submit poster proposals. Proposals from other levels of students will not be accepted.

There will be plenary and concurrent panels. Each panel will be moderated. Panel Chairs and appointed Commentators may be invited to react to papers.

  1. Submission Procedure and Instructions

Please write “China-Africa IEL Conference CfP” in the subject of the email, followed by “paper”, “panel” or “poster” proposal, and then the sub-field of IEL which should be one of the following “trade” or “investment” or “financial/monetary” or “international IP” or “other”. E.g.:

Subject: China-Africa IEL Conference CfP Paper Proposal, Investment

Subject: China-Africa IEL Conference CfP Panel Proposal, Trade

Subject: China-Africa IEL Conference CfP Poster Proposal, Other

Paper and poster proposals should include a cover e-mail with full institutional affiliation and contact details of the proposer, and a WORD attachment with a paper abstract of no longer than 500 words. The abstract should contain the title of the paper, along with a line indicating the subfield of IEL in which it falls.

Panel proposals should include two separate WORD documents: (a) a one-page document containing a panel title and a short description of the topics covered during the panel, and (b) a one-page document listing suggested panellists (no more than 5, which includes moderators, commentators and discussants), including concise information about the panelists and their specific contribution to the panel, as a presenter of a paper or as a participant serving in a different role. Suggested panellists must have been consulted by the organizer of the panel about the proposal. They must have confirmed their interest in serving on such a panel if it were to be selected and must have agreed to come in person to the conference. Please take into account the diversity of speakers and opinions reflected in your panel proposal. In assessing and selecting panel proposals, the organizers may take into account the diversity of speakers and the originality and topicality of the panel’s topic and presentations. Only one panel proposal per person (panel organizer and speakers included) will be considered.

Based on past experience with similar conferences and the high number of panel proposals typically submitted, and taking into account the need to design a balanced conference program, the organizers reserve the right to accept panel proposals subject to conditions regarding the size and composition of the panel and the variety of topics covered during a single panel discussion.

In evaluating proposals, please note that priority will be given to unpublished papers/posters and works in progress. In your cover e-mail, please note whether the paper has already been published, or has been accepted for publication.

No individual can participate on multiple panels. Accordingly, if you submit a paper proposal and are listed also in a panel proposal, we will consider both proposals, but cannot accept both your paper proposal and your inclusion as part of a panel. Accordingly, if you are submitting individually and as part of a panel and both are accepted, we will require you to choose which presentation to give.

The conference organizers anticipate announcing the results of this call for papers and panel proposals by the end of July 2017.

Conference papers will be made available to conference participants prior to the conference. Accepted papers (from paper and panel proposals) must be submitted by 5 November 2017, in order to ensure the dissemination of papers among conference attendees.

  • Conference Fees, Costs and Financial Support

All conference participants, including speakers, must cover their own travel, accommodation and attendance costs, though the hosts will endeavour to suggest appropriate accommodation based on attendees needs.

Participants interested in taking part in the networking activity on the second day of the conference will be expected to contribute a sum of $184


Please submit enquiries to either of the conference organizers: Colin Picker (c.picker@unsw.edu.au) and James Thokozani Ngwira (thokozani.ngwira@trapca.org)

Conference Committee:

  1. Colin Picker, Heng WANG and Weihuan ZHOU from UNSW Law’s CIBEL
  2. Caiphas Chekwoti and James Thokozani Ngwira from TRAPCA
  3. Liyu HAN from Renmin University Law School
  4. Tebello Thabane from University of Cape Town Faculty of Law
  5. Xavier Groussot from Lund University Faculty of Law

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