LGBT+ in Japan from a legal perspective and additional topics in the latest ZJapanR

February 01, 2023

Issue 54 (2022) of the Journal of Japanese Law (ZJapanR) opens with three articles on the topic of LGBT+ rights in Japan, an area that is also the subject of a conference report. Other contributions examine Japan’s “unequal treaties” and current questions regarding corporate governance. The issue also features extensive coverage of the 2022 symposium that was held in honour of the Journal’s founder, Harald Baum: “Comparing and Transferring Law and Legal Expertise. The Role of Japan”.

The articles authored by Ruth Effinowicz, head of the Centre of Expertise on Japan at the Institute and supervising editor of the ZJapanR, Mika Aotake and Mai Ishijima are based on papers presented at the symposium titled “LGBT+ in Japan aus rechtlicher Sicht – Aktuelle Fragen und Entwicklungstendenzen” [LGBT+ in Japan from a Legal Perspective – Current Issues and Developmental Tendencies], held 22 July 2022 at the University of Augsburg.

2021 was the 160th anniversary of the signing of the “Treaty of Amity, Commerce and Navigation between Prussia and Japan”. Moritz Bälz and Felix Dröll have taken this occasion to look at Japan’s creation of a modern legal system in the decades that followed 1861. In an article titled “Ungleiche Verträge” [Unequal Treaties], they come to the conclusion that Japan’s desire to revise this Treaty was a driving force behind Japan’s unique approach to modernization. In this sense, the Prussian-Japanese Treaty contributed to the fact that Japanese and German lawyers meet today as friends and equals.

The issue then presents two articles on current corporate governance topics before turning to the treatment of older workers in Japan. This is followed by a look at recent case law and a detailed documentation of the new Ainu Law of 2019.

A conference report authored by Julian Hinz details “Comparing and Transferring Law and Legal Expertise. The Role of Japan – Symposium in Honor of Harald Baum's 70th Birthday”, held at the Institute from 1 to 3 September 2022. His account summarizes the symposium’s wide-ranging programme of lectures and discussion that explored the role of Japan both in the field of comparative law and as an exporter of legal concepts.

Image: © Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law / Ana Karolina Wolf

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