Margaret Y. K. Woo
Professor of Law
New York University, JD 1983
Georgetown University, LLM 1989
Professor Woo, a leading expert on the Anglo-American legal system and the Chinese socialist legal system, teaches Civil Procedure, Administrative Law and Comparative Law. She is a former fellow of the Bunting Institute (Radcliffe College) and is presently an associate of the East Asian Legal Studies Program at Harvard University. She has received many prestigious grants from a variety of organizations, including the National Science Foundation and the Ford Foundation, and is on the Senior Scholar Roster for the Fulbright Scholars Program. In 2015, she served as an invited visiting researcher at the Max Planck Institute in Luxembourg. In 2018, she was selected for a Fulbright Specialist award. Under the Fulbright auspices, she is partnering with faculty at the University of Florence in Italy to develop a series of comparative law seminars at the University of Florence that address the changing landscape of international cooperation over the past year, including BREXIT, multi-lateral treaties, and ongoing political developments in the US and Europe that, as a whole, suggest further withdrawals from international law institutions, comparative law projects and multi-lateral institutions may be imminent.
Professor Woo is the co-editor of East Asian Law: Universal Norms and Local Culture (Routledge, 2003), and Chinese Justice: Civil Dispute Resolution in Contemporary China (Cambridge University Press, 2011). She is also co-author of Litigating in America: Civil Procedure in Context (Aspen Publishing, 2006). She is a co-editor of the American Association of Law School’s Journal of Legal Education.
Professor Woo is a member of the prestigious American Law Institute and the American Bar Foundation. She has also served on the board of trustees for numerous organizations, including for the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (Boston Chapter), the Harry Dow Legal Assistance Fund and the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund. In 1997, she was named the law school’s Distinguished Professor of Public Policy.
Fields of Expertise
- Administrative Law
- Asian Legal Systems
- Chinese Law
- Civil Procedure
- Comparative Law
- Development and the Law
- Global Issues in Civil Procedure (in progress).
- Chinese Justice: Civil Dispute Resolution in Contemporary China (Cambridge University Press, 2011).
- Litigating in America: Civil Procedure in Context (Aspen Publishing Co., 2006) (co-author).
- American Civil Litigation: Historical, Social and Cultural Context (Falu Chubanshe, 2002) (co-author).
- East Asian Law: Universal Norms and Local Culture (Cruzon/Routledge Publishers, 2002) (co-author).
- “Navigating Troubled Seas: The Future Direction of Law Schools in the United Kingdom and the United States,” 5 Journal of International and Comparative Law 43 (2018) (co-author).
- “Case Management Or Case Elimination: A Snapshot from North America,” 85 International Journal of Procedural Law 1 (2018).
- “Comparative Law in a Time of Nativism,” 41 Hastings International and Comparative Law Journal 1 (Winter 2018).
- “Court Reform with Chinese Characteristics,” 27 Washington International Law Journal 1 (December 2017).
- "Manning the Courthouse Gates: Pleadings, Jurisdiction and the Nation-State," 15 Nevada Law Journal 1261 (2015).
- “Bounded Legality: China’s Developmental State and Civil Dispute Resolution: an Essay in Honor of Professor Hungdah Chiu,” 27 University of Maryland Journal of International Law 235 (2012).
- “Law’s Location in China’s Countryside,” 29(2) Wisconsin International Law Journal (2011).
- “Civil Justice in China: An Empirical Study of Three Provinces,” 53 American Journal of Comparative Law 911 (2005).
- “Law, Development and the Socio-Economic Rights of Chinese Women,” 19 Columbia Journal of Asian Law 345 (Spring 2005).
- “Shaping Citizenship: Chinese Family Law and Women,” 15 Yale Journal of Law and Feminism 75 (2003).
- “Reflections on International Legal Education Exchange,” 51 Journal of Legal Education 449 (2001).
- “Reaffirming the Merit in Affirmative Action,” 47 Journal of Legal Education 514 (1997).
- “Biology and Equality: Challenge for Feminism in the Socialist and the Liberal State,” 42 Emory Law Journal 143 (1993).
- “The Disappearing Trials: Retrenchment of Litigation in North America,” in Transformation of Civil Justice: Unity and Diversity, ed Alan Usalac (Springer, 2019).
- “Comparative Law: A Plurality of Methods” in Approaches to Procedural Law,” The Max Planck Institute (2017).
- "In Search of Justice: China's Elusive Civil Litigation Reforms" in Justice: The China Experience, eds. S. Trevaskes et. al (Cambridge University Press, 2017).
- “The Dynamism of Chinese Civil Procedure” in The Dynamism of Civil Procedure: Global Trends and Developments, Picker, C., & Seidman, G. eds.,(Springer, 2016).
- “Justice,” in Handbook of China’s Governance and Domestic Politics, ed. C. Ogden (Routledge, 2013), 53.