Photo by Joan Lebold Cohen

Photo by Joan Lebold Cohen

Jerome Cohen (孔傑榮/柯恩) is a professor at NYU School of Law and Director of its U.S.-Asia Law Institute. He is also Adjunct Senior Fellow for Asia at the Council on Foreign Relations.

Here you can find his lifelong work and interesting stories on Asia and law as well as resources for Chinese legal studies.


founded by Jerome A. Cohen and Frank K. Upham, provides an essential public service by educating important constituencies about developments in Asian legal systems and societies; bolstering legal reform efforts with comparative research and international expertise; and nurturing the current and next generation of scholars and practitioners who will set the direction of legal reform in the future.

Law, Life and Asia

Jerome Cohen's Video Memoirs

Establish Yourself At Thirty

”Sanshi erli (三十而立)!” I first heard this famous Chinese phrase before I could understand it. Every educated Chinese knows it as one of a series of maxims coined by China’s greatest sage, Confucius, as advice appropriate to life’s successive decades.

I was about to turn thirty and confronting my most daring career decision. As a young, untenured professor of American public and international law who had just finished his first year of teaching at Berkeley, should I take up an extraordinary opportunity to study China, one that I had failed to persuade others to pursue?

New Book

Taiwan and International Human Rights: A Story of Transformation

Edited by by Jerome A. Cohen, William P. Alford, and Chang-fa Lo (2019)

This book tells a story of Taiwan’s transformation from an authoritarian regime to a democratic system where human rights are protected as required by international human rights treaties. There were difficult times for human rights protection during the martial law era; however, there has also been remarkable transformation progress in human rights protection thereafter. The comprehensive coverage of this book should be able to give readers a well-rounded picture of Taiwan’s human rights performance. Readers will find appealing the story of the effort to achieve high standards of human rights protection in a jurisdiction barred from joining international human rights conventions.