© The Author(s) 2015
Katrin BlasekRule of Law in ChinaSpringerBriefs in Law10.1007/978-3-662-44622-5_5

5. Conclusion

Katrin Blasek 

Technical University of Wildau, Wildau, Germany



Katrin Blasek

5.1 Conclusion

The rule of law is understood and interpreted differently in the countries of comparison. The differing interpretations can be traced back to differing political, historical, and philosophical foundations. The analysis further shows that in China and in the mentioned Western countries, the rule of law is seen as a tool to reach very different goals. While the rule of law is meant to ensure liberty and equality of the people (see Sect. 2.​1) in the West, the rule of law with Chinese characteristics is aimed to ensure economic and social development as well as stability in society (see Sect. 1.​1.​2 and Chap. 3).

Comparing the rule of law in Germany, France, and the United Kingdom reveals some differences between these systems. Obviously, there is no single understanding of rule of law. Each of these Western countries has developed its own version of the rule of law, yet the German system can all in all be regarded as the most rigid system.

The different understandings of the rule of law affect the relationship between the people and state organs in many ways. The differences especially result in different distribution of power among the respective state organs (see Sect. 4.​1.​1), in different degrees of legal certainty (see Sect. 4.​4.​1) and in different definitions and levels of protection of human rights (see Sect.4.​3.​1).

Although varying in detail, the interpretations of the rule of law in Germany, France, and the United Kingdom share the same fundamental values. They emphasize the importance of fundamental aspects like the separation of power, the supremacy of law, the understanding of human rights as individual rights, and the need for their protection as well as the need for legal certainty and the independence of the judiciary. Hence, for the purpose of this paper, one can speak of a “Western version” of the rule of law.

As the paper has shown as well, the analyzed running systems of the rule of law have their specific imperfections.1 Moreover, it took Germany, France, and the United Kingdom hundreds of years to develop the present-day level of the rule of law, and many important developments took place within the last decades only (e.g., the protection of human rights in Sect. 4.​3.​2). More importantly, the implementation of the analyzed essentials of the rule of law remains an exhaustive task, requires constant efforts, and will not be completed at a certain point.

Only gold members can continue reading. Log In or Register to continue