Universiteit Leiden

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Straton Papagianneas

PhD candidate

S. Papagianneas
+31 71 527 2727

Straton Papagianneas is a PhD Candidate at the Institute for Area Studies.

More information about Straton Papagianneas


Straton Papagianneas is a PhD Candidate at the Leiden Institute for Area Studies, Leiden University. He is also connected to the Van Vollenhoven Institute for Law, Governance and Society (VVI) and the eLaw – Center for Law and Digital Technologies.

His PhD Project researches smart court reform in China, i.e. the digitisation and automation of courts. It focuses on how normative and ideological ideas about law and courts in China’s political-legal system shape and influence the automation of justice administration. It argues that smart courts cater to the belief in science as the primary legitimating principle for decision-making. Moreover, the instrumental conceptualisation of law and courts and their subordinate position to the political will of the party-state make the digitisation and automation of justice appealing. Smart courts fit perfectly within the worldview of the Chinese party-state and perpetuate it in turn.

Straton previously was senior editor of the Mapping China Journal and Assistant Managing Editor of the China Guiding Cases Project at the Stanford Law School. 

He studied International Law at Wuhan University. He also obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Economic Diplomacy at the Brussels Diplomatic Academy and his MA and BA in Chinese Studies from the University of Heidelberg and University of Leuven respectively.

He is interested in the socio-legal study of Chinese law, legal and judicial reforms, criminal justice, automation of judicial practice, and its relation to fairness, procedural justice, and broader society.


2018-2019: International & Chinese Law at Wuhan University
2017-2018: Postgraduate Economic Diplomacy at the Brussels Diplomatic Academy

2015-2017: MA Chinese Studies with a minor in Development Economics at Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg.
2012-2015: BA in Language & Area Studies: Sinology with a minor in Economic Policy and Management at the Catholic University of Leuven
Summer 2014: Summer Programme in Chinese Law at Shanghai Jiao Tong University

Language Skills

Dutch:      Native speaker

Excellent knowledge (level C2, 116/120 TOEFL)


Excellent knowledge (level C2)


Very good knowledge (level C1)

Chinese: Good knowledge (HSK 5)

PhD candidate

  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Leiden Institute for Area Studies
  • SAS China


No relevant ancillary activities

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