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Thomas CoendetDivision Head

NameThomas Coendet

Title / PositionShanghai Distinguished Professor (Oriental Chair)

DisciplineInternational Law

Office Phone+86 21 6293 4330

AddressShanghai Jiao Tong University, KoGuan Law School, 1954 Huashan Road, 200030 Shanghai, PRC


Educational Background

MJur, University of Oxford (2015); Dr. iur., University of Berne (2012); Admission to the Swiss bar (2008)

Professional Experience

Thomas Coendet is Shanghai Distinguished Professor (Oriental Chair) at Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), joining the law faculty in September of 2016. Prior to joining SJTU, he held a series of prestigious fellowships in Europe, including a Postdoc at Goethe University Frankfurt (2016) and visiting positions at the University of Oxford (2010/11) and the University of Paris I (Sorbonne) (2011). He was a research associate at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law in Hamburg (2010) and during his Swiss university education a fellow of the Swiss Study Foundation. Starting in 2012, he practised for two and a half years as an attorney for banking, finance, and regulatory in one of the leading and internationally most active Swiss law firms. His publications include a book on comparative legal reasoning and a wide range of journal articles and chapters on legal theory, judiciary, banking and contract law, both in English and German. For his paper Legal Reasoning: Arguments from Comparison, he received the ARSP Best Article Prize 2017.

Honours and Awards

ARSP Best Article Prize (2017), Honorary Member of the Romanian Association for Law and European Affairs (2017), Holcim Fellow (2016), Freshfields Scholar (University of Oxford, 2014/15), UNIDROIT Scholar (University of Oxford, 2014/15), JPS Fellow (2011), SNF Fellow (2010), Gustave Dubois Prize (2006)

Research Interests

Law of finance and financial regulation, contract law, comparative law, legal theory, legal linguistics

Research Projects

Financial Innovation before Civil Courts – A Historical, Comparative, and Theoretical Analysis, Oriental Scholar Research Project

Selected Publications:

“Critical Legal Orientalism. Rethinking the Comparative Discourse on Chinese Law,” 67 (2019) American Journal of Comparative Law (forthcoming, Issue 4) (Reviewed article)

“Legal Reasoning: Arguments from Comparison,” 102 (2016) Archives for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy (ARSP), 476–507 (Reviewed article) (awarded the ARSP Best Article Prize 2017, open access)

“Judicial Decision-Making Today. The Swiss Perspective,” in Jürgen Basedow, Holger Fleischer, Reinhard Zimmermann (eds.): Legislators, Judges, and Professors, Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck 2016, 65–95

“Gesetzgebungsstrategie des neuen AGB-Rechts,”133 (2014) Zeitschrift für Schweizerisches Recht (ZSR), 45–72 (Reviewed article) [The Legislative Strategy for the New Law on Standard Contract Terms]

Rechtsvergleichende Argumentation. Phänomenologie der Veranderung im rechtlichen Diskurs, Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck 2012 [Comparative Legal Reasoning]

Reviewed by:

Ulfrid Neumann, 2018 Archiv für Rechts- und Sozialphilosophie (ARSP), 449–52

H.C.F. Schoordijk, Realistische en pragmatische rechtsvinding, Nijmegen: Wolf 2014, 29–30

Stelio Mangiameli, 2014 Rivista trimestrale di diritto pubblico, 1186–90

A. Kohl, 2013 Revue de droit international et de droit comparé, 644–6

Ralph Christensen, 2013 Juristen Zeitung (JZ), 354–5

Courses Taught

Private international law, Western legal culture, English legal writing

Other Professional Activities

Asian Journal of Law and Society (Cambridge University Press), Managing Editor (2016–9); Ancilla Iuris – Constellations of Law (anci.ch), Member of the Editorial Board (since 2016); Coordinator of International Activities at the China Institute for Socio-Legal Studies, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (since 2019); Research fellow at the Law and Society Centre of KoGuan Law School, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (since 2018); Fellow of the Study Group for Legal Linguistics, University of Heidelberg (since 2014)