Why are we running this project?

In alliance with the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ), the Robert Bosch Stiftung has been supporting the legal transformation process in the People’s Republic of China since 2011 with an exchange program for judges. Alongside judges, lawyers play an equally important part in ensuring a functioning legal system: As the representatives of non-governmental and therefore less powerfully positioned litigants, lawyers are instrumental in shaping the level of confidence people have in their legal system. Strengthening the profession is therefore an important step in establishing a level playing field in the courtroom and, consequently, a fair trial.

What are our goals?

Professional exchange on an equal footing To expand the Sino-German legal exchange with a program for lawyers, the Robert Bosch Stiftung, GIZ and the German Federal Bar (BRAK) joined forces in 2015 to launch the Sino-German Lawyers’ Exchange. The project aims to provide further comprehensive support to China in its reform process of improving due process and sound legal protection. Another purpose is to foster the professional exchange between lawyers from the two nations.

How does the project work?

The program centers around exchange visits by lawyers from select Chinese provinces and German states to each other’s countries in their professional capacity. During these visits, the selected six Chinese and six German lawyers discuss their profession and the role of lawyers in China and Germany with their counterparts, as well as relevant legal matters that closely relate to their everyday work. Visits to legal institutions give the participants further insight into the legal system and legal practice of the other country. The professional exchange is complemented by a cultural and social program so as to facilitate a more personal interaction between the lawyers as well. In Germany, symposiums are hosted after the trips to China to allow the program participants to share the in-depth experience and knowledge gained with their local bar associations.

Who organizes and supports the project?

Besides the Robert Bosch Stiftung and GIZ, project partners include the All China Lawyers Association (ACLA) as well as the German Federal Bar (BRAK). The project is also supported by the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV).