Document Type

Journal Article

Department/Unit

Department of Government and International Studies

Title

“Mediate First”: The revival of mediation in labour dispute resolution in China

Language

English

Abstract

© 2015 The China Quarterly. The past few years have witnessed the revival of mediation as a chief method of labour dispute settlement in China. While the central government's campaign has reinvigorated the use of mediation in order to control social conflicts and maintain stability, its expansion and extensive deployment have also been driven by local authorities, as mediation can better serve their policy priorities and bureaucratic interests. Not only does the extension of mediation provide local bureaucratic agencies with flexibility and discretionary power to resolve conflicts without having to comply with legal minimums, it also legitimizes the courts' "non-legalistic approach" to settling dispute cases. The extensive employment of mediation by local authorities has chipped away at the role of legal procedures in settling labour disputes. The revival of mediation embodies a tension between the rule of law the government has promoted since the reform and the extrajudicial methods it needs for controlling conflicts.

Keywords

China, dispute resolution, grand mediation, judicialization, labour dispute, mediation

Publication Date

2015

Source Publication Title

China Quarterly

Volume

222

Start Page

380

End Page

402

Publisher

Cambridge University Press

DOI

10.1017/S0305741015000739

Link to Publisher's Edition

http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0305741015000739

ISSN (print)

03057410

ISSN (electronic)

14682648

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