Wednesday, 30 May 2007

Teaching at the Herstmnceux Castle

After more than 20 hours of travelling, I finally arrived at the HerstMonceux Castle on May 26th to start my teaching at the International Study Centre (ISC) of Queen's University (Canada).

Here's a bit of the history of the Castle from ISC's website:

The rich history that surrounds Herstmonceux Castle and the impressive structure of the Castle itself offer special appeal for students participating in ISC programs. In fact, the area shows evidence of prehistoric activity dating back as far as the Paleolithic period, over 20,000 years ago.

Herstmonceux’s Written History
The Battle of Hastings on October 14, 1066, occurred just a few kilometres from the Saxon village of Herste and changed the course of world history. The first written evidence of the existence of the Herste settlement appears in William the Conqueror’s Domesday Book which reports that one of William’s closest supporters granted tenancy of the manor at Herste to a man named ‘Wilbert’.

The Herstmonceux Name
By the end of the twelfth century, the family at the manor house at Herste had considerable status. Written accounts mention a lady called Idonea de Herste, who married a Norman nobleman named Ingelram de Monceux. Around this time, the manor began to be called the “Herste of the Monceux”, a name that eventually became Herstmonceux (pronounced Herst-mon-soo).

Herstmonceux Castle Estate
A descendant of the Monceuxes, Roger Fiennes, was ultimately responsible for the construction of Herstmonceux Castle in the County of Sussex. Sir Roger was appointed Treasurer of the Household of Henry VI, and needed a house fitting a man of his position, so construction of the castle on the site of the old manor house began in 1441. Today it is the oldest brick building of any note still standing in England. The castle was built of brick, a highly unusual material for the time in Britain, and the builders of Herstmonceux Castle concentrated more on grandeur and comfort than on defence to produce a truly magnificent estate. The property passed through the hands of a number of private owners until it was sold in 1946 to the British Admiralty, which bought the estate for the Royal Greenwich Observatory. The site served as an important scientific institution for over 40 years. The estate still provides housing for the Newton Telescope and the Equatorial Telescope Buildings, which have been converted to an interactive science centre for schoolchildren.

Wednesday, 16 May 2007

Periodicals in China

I am in Beijing at the moment, where the International Federation of the Periodical Press (FIPP) is holding its 36th World Magazine Conference. One can't help wondering the connection between this "timely" conference and the WTO complaint against China on trading rights and distribution services for foreign periodicals.

In a speech by Director-General Liu of the General Administration of Press and Publication, he stressed that both local and foreign media enjoy "equal protection in China" so long as they carry out "lawful businesses".

Sunday, 13 May 2007

World Bank project on Aus-China FTA 中国和澳洲自贸区中的服务贸易问题

I've recently been appointed by the World Bank as an International Consultant to conduct research on trade in services issues in the proposed Australia-China FTA. I would appreciate any inputs or stories relating to the topic, especially those on China's export interest in services in Australia.


Thursday, 10 May 2007

My Paper Makes SSRN Top Ten List

I just received a notice from the SSRN today announcing that my paper
"China's Participation in the WTO: A Lawyer's Perspective" was
recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for "Emerging
Markets: Economics". I checked the SSRN website and found that my
paper was listed as the 7th most downloaded paper for Journal of
Emerging Markets: Economics for the period from March 11, 2007 to May
10, 2007. This is not bad for a paper that is yet to be published in
paper format (it is forthcoming in the Singapore Year Book of
International Law

More details on the ranking can be found at

The paper is at

Hope more people will find my article interesting!

Friday, 4 May 2007

Academy of International Trade Law 2007

I taught at the Academy of International Trade Law in the summer of 2006. It is a wonderful program hosted by the Institute of European Studies of Macau. Last year I taught the module on Dispute Settlement, which is originally scheduled to be taught by Prof. Joseph Weiler from New York University School of Law. When he was unable to come to Macau due to personal reasons, I was recommended to teach the module instead.

This year, I will continue teaching in the course. Students from law schools across the world are welcome to apply. If you are interested, you can find more details about the course and how to apply here.