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Jinting Deng, Pinxin Liu: Consultative Authoritarianism: The Drafting of China's Internet Security Law and E-Commerce Law

ABSTRACT

Through interviews and content analyses, this article conducted a comparative study of the drafting of China,s Internet Security Law (ISL) and E-Commerce Law (ECL). Although both had multiparty participants, they had very different substantive outcomes. Contrary to formalistic participation in the ISL, the ECL,s drafting involved considerable communication and negotiation. This difference was intended by the central party given its interests, and it was realized through its control over the scope, principle, direction and focus of the participation in the drafting, which is referred to as ,leadership control,. This confirms the existence of consultative authoritarianism in China,s central lawmaking systems. The difference contributes to the theory by outlining indirect institutionalized control of the central party. This mode of control causes the authoritarian regime within the legal framework to occasionally be responsive and consultative, and at times fragmented, in realizing its interest in different situations. Such a polity still presents limits in terms of relieving contradictions in China. Power manipulation and attitudinal and fragmented problems can exaggerate such differences and result in the drafting of unreasonably polarized legislation. Interests and substantive power are essential for determining the limits and evolving directions of consultative authoritarianism. For further democratization, leadership control must be limited by the constitution and such limits must be afforded substantive power to become real and practical.

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful to the guest editor, Dr Jinting Deng, for organizing this special issue and the review conference, and for the comments offered by the reviewers and the editor during the review conference held by Renmin University School of Law and its English journal Frontiers of Law in China. The authors would like to thank the anonymous reviewers for their valuable insights and suggestions. The views presented here are the authors, alone.

Disclosure statement

No potential conflict of interest was reported by the authors.

Funding

This article is funded by Renmin University School of Law and its English journal Frontiers of Law in China and published in the special issue co-organized by Frontiers of Law in China and Journal of Contemporary China. It is also funded by the Social Science Fund of Beijing, Youth Project ,Research of Venue-Change System and Criminal Sentence Standard in Beijing,s Corruption Cases,, 15FXC043; the Program for Young Innovative Research Team in Renmin University of China Law School; and the Major Project of Key Research Base for Humanities and Social Sciences, Education Ministry of China, ,Criminal Rule of Law in Internet Security,, 15JJD820011.

Notes on contributors

Jinting Deng is an Assistant Professor at the School of Law, and a Researcher at Research Center of Criminal Jurisprudence, Renmin University of China.

Pinxin Liu is a Professor at the School of Law, and a Researcher at Research Center of Criminal Jurisprudence, Renmin University of China.


To cite this article: Jinting Deng & Pinxin Liu (2017) Consultative Authoritarianism: The Drafting

of China,s Internet Security Law and E-Commerce Law, Journal of Contemporary China, 26:107,

679-695, DOI: 10.1080/10670564.2017.1305488


(Editor:Liu Xiaoling)

 
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