Donald C. Clarke

Portrait of Donald C. Clarke
David Weaver Research Professor of Law
2000 H Street, NW
Washington, District Of Columbia 20052
[email protected]

Donald C. Clarke, a specialist in Chinese law, joined the law school faculty in spring 2005 after teaching at the University of Washington School of Law in Seattle and the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, as well as practicing for three years at a major international firm with a large China practice. 

He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, and has published extensively in journals such as the China Quarterly and American Journal of Comparative Law on subjects ranging from Chinese criminal law and procedure to corporate governance. His recent research has focused on Chinese legal institutions and the legal issues presented by China’s economic reforms. 

In addition to his academic work on Chinese law, Professor Clarke founded and maintains Chinalaw (formerly Chinese Law Net), the leading Internet listserv on Chinese law, writes the Chinese Law Prof Blog, is a co-editor of Asian Law Abstracts on the Social Science Research Network, and has often served as an expert witness on matters of Chinese law. Professor Clarke also speaks and reads Japanese and has published translations of Japanese legal scholarship in Law in Japan. 

He is a member of the New York Bar and the Council on Foreign Relations.



BA, Princeton University; MSc, University of London; JD, Harvard University

In the News

“China Accuses Detained Canadians of Espionage’’

March 04, 2019

Donald C. Clarke is quoted by The Wall Street Journal about two Canadians detained by China accused of stealing Chinese state secrets.

“International Call For China To Release Canadians”

January 21, 2019
Donald C. Clarke speaks to CTV News about a letter he signed calling for China to release two Canadian citizens being detained.

“Mr. Xi, Release These Two Canadian Citizens’’

January 21, 2019

Donald C. Clarke is mentioned by The Globe and Mail among those signing a letter to release Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor.

“Beijing Digs In: Canada's Complaints Are Met With 'Death-Threat Diplomacy' From China’’

January 18, 2019
Donald C. Clarke is quoted by CBC News about how Robert Schellenberg's death sentence is part of China's new aggressiveness.

“China Issues Stern Rebuke to Canada”

January 15, 2019

Donald C. Clarke speaks to CTV News Channel about a Canadian man who has been sentenced to death in China for drug smuggling.