Xuhui (Michael) Fang is a law professor at Nanchang University (NCU) and an associated researcher at Cyberjustice Laboratory of Université de Montréal. He holds an LLB from Peking University and a JD from Washington University in St. Louis.
Michael has taught his Chinese students that ODR can level the playing field for the disadvantaged in the developing countries. In 2011, he introduced Smartsettle’s visual blind bidding to NCU law students by leading them to participate in the e-negotiation competition. In 2016, Michael Fang assisted his students on an interdisciplinary project titled “ODR solves the dispute of sexual harassment on campus” which resulted in them delivering a presentation at the 16th international ODR forum held in Beijing.
Michael has also been a leading advocate for the use of ODR as an appropriate and alternative process for dispute resolution in China. In August 2013, he introduced eBay’s community court to Chinese lawyers in his speech about ODR at Beijing Bar Association, just four months before Taobao formally applied crowdsourced ODR to resolve eCcommerce disputes. In September 2016, Michael Fang co-chaired the 16th international ODR forum held in Beijing which enabled many Chinese experts and leaders from various fields to discuss ODR issues with international ODR experts from different countries. In October 2016, Fang helped set up an ODR process for the International Commercial Mediation Center for the Belt and Road Initiative in Beijing and incorporated the UNCITRAL Technical Notes on ODR (Technical Notes) into the new mediation rule. In 2017, Fang facilitated a visit from western ODR experts to the Hangzhou Westlake Court and Hangzhou Internet Court. Also, Fang has promoted ODR to resolve cross-border e-commerce transaction disputes at E-business Better Service (EBS) , a professional organization authorized by local government officials to build a better e-commerce environment in Shenzhen city.
Michael has also used his expertise and international experience to support the deliberations of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Working Group. In 2015, Michael attended the 32nd session of UNCITRAL Working Group III (ODR). He participated in modifying the introduction of the Technical Notes and ensured that the introduction included ODR elements such as “impartiality, independence, speedy (it was replaced by ‘secure’ in the final session, see below), efficiency, effectiveness, fairness, fast, accountability, independence, simple and transparency” (thus making the acronym for ODR elements “I SEE FAST” ).
In 2016, Michael Fang attended the 33rd or the final session of the UNCITRAL Working Group III , serving “double duty” as an observer for the National Center for Technology and Dispute Resolution (NCTDR) and the China Society of Private International Law (CSPIL). Michael Fang succeeded in making a proposal entitled ” [s]uggestion of introduction of the term ‘ security’ into the outcome document reflecting elements and principles of an ODR process” with support from some ODR providers such as Modria. Because the Working Group had no mandate to introduce any “brand new issues” such as “security”, Michael Fang discussed his proposal with some participants in advance of the session and efficiently advanced his suggestion at the session. Moreover, he facilitated the communication between the delegations of member states of UNCITRAL representing different legal traditions.
In 2017, Michael Fang attended the 55th session of UNCITRAL Working Group IV (Electronic Commerce), which discussed “contractual aspects of cloud computing and legal issues related to identity management and trust services”. Since then he has explored the new frontier of ODR in a cloud computing environment.