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Prof Jean Du Plessis

STAFF PROFILE

Position

Professor (Corporate Law)

Faculty

Faculty of Business and Law

Department

BL Law

Campus

Geelong Waterfront Campus

Contact

Biography

Jean is currently a Professor of Law at Deakin University. He studied in South Africa and obtained his Doctorate in Law (LLD) in 1991. He served a 3-year term as Head of the Deakin Law School from 2000-2002 and was the President of the Corporate Law Teachers Association (CLTA) in 2007 and 2008. In December 2014 Jean was appointed to the Deakin University Council for a 3-year period until 31 December 2017. Jean became a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD) in November 2011. He is currently teaching the units Corporate Governance, Corporate Law and Corporations Law at Deakin University.

Jean has spent extensive time doing research in the UK and in Germany (as Alexander von Humboldt Scholar) in the areas of corporate law and corporate governance. He is the recipient of the Anneliese Maier Research Award (http://www.humboldt-foundation.de/web/anneliese-maier-award.html) from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, an award of EUR250,000 over five years (2013-2017) to enable him to conduct research regarding the further internationalisation of the German corporate law and corporate governance models. He has published extensively in international refereed law journals in the areas of corporate law and corporate governance. He published several books as co-author in Australia, Germany and South Africa.

From 2004-2008 Jean has been involved in the South African Corporate Law Reform Program as part of a small international reference group that assisted the South African Department of Trade and Industry with the new South African Companies Act 71 of 2008, which commenced on 1 May 2011.

Read more on Jean's profile

Research interests

  • Corporate Governance
  • Company Directors
  • Employee Participation at Board Level / Codermination

Teaching interests

  • Corporate Governance
  • Company Law 
  • Company Directors
  • Business Organisations
  • Business Law
  • Commercial Law

Units taught

  • Corporate Governance (Postgraduate)
  • Company Directors (Postgraduate)
  • Masters of Corporate Law
  • Diploma in Corporate Law
  • Entrepreneurial Law
  • Business Organisations
  • Corporations Law
  • Business Law

Conferences

Selected Conference Papers:

  • • Corporate Law Teachers Association (CLTA) Paper (with Dr. Andreas Scheuch), “Ratification by shareholders of wrongs by directors”, 7 February 2017;
    • Federal Court of Australia – Law Council of Australia, Business Law Section Annual Conference (Sydney) - “Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and ‘Contemporary Community Expectations”, 25-26 August 2016;
    • Presenter at Rotary Conference with Dan Simmonds (Principal Partner, Harwood Andrews and Paul Cohen (Acting CEO, Barwon Health), 19 March 2016:;
    • ASIC - WORKPLACE DIVERSITY Forum – Presentation (with Prof. Sandeep Gopalan) – Geelong, 7 March 2016;
    • CLTA – “Non-Financial Reporting – Shaping Corporate Behaviour”, 2 February 2016;
    • Staff Seminar, Faculty of Law, University of Oslo, “Sustainability and Integrated Reporting: Directors’ potential liability and possible defences”, 30 November 2015;
    • 2-hour guest lecture, Postgraduate students, Faculty of Law, Renmin University,  'Recent Developments regarding Directors’ Duties, Liabilities and Defences against Liability', Beijing, 24 September 2015;
    • Keynote address at a joint seminar of the Hong Kong Institute of Company Secretaries (HKICS), CPA Hong Kong and the Law Society Hong Kong on the topic 'New Trends Regarding Sustainability and Integrated Reporting for Companies: What Protection Do Directors Have?', Hong Kong, 22 September 2015;
    • Hong Kong Institute of Directors (HKIoD), Annual Directors’ Conference, 'World Trends in Corporate Governance', Hong Kong, 22 September 2015;
    • Hong Kong Companies Registry,  'Proposal for Law Reform: The Honest and Reasonable Director Defence and other Proposals for Wider Protection against Personal Liability', Honk Kong, 21 September 2015;
    • Staff seminar, the Faculty of Law, Hong Kong University, jointly with the Asian Institute of International Finance Law (AIIFL) and the Centre for Financial Regulation & Economic Development (CFRED) on the topic 'New Trends Regarding Sustainability and Integrated Reporting for Companies: What Protection Do Directors Have?', 21 September 2015.

Awards

  • Anneliese Maier Research Award from the German Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (EUR250,000 over a five year period and funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research) (2013-2018)
  • Alexander von Humboldt Research Scholarships (1995, 2003, 2010)
  • Medallion Award, President of the Corporate Law Teachers Association (CLTA) (2010)

Publications

Filter by

2017

Corporate social responsibility and "contemporary community expectations"

J Du Plessis

(2017), Vol. 35, pp. 30-46, Company and securities law journal, Rozelle, N.S.W., C1

journal

Delinquent directors' and 'directors under probation' : a unique South African approach regarding disqualification of company directors

J Du Plessis, P Delport

(2017), Vol. 134, pp. 274-295, South African law journal, Lansdowne, South Africa, C1

journal

Whistleblowing reforms: a critical analysis of the current law and the new "bells and whistles" proposed

J Mathiopoulos, K Hogan, J Du Plessis

(2017), Vol. 35, pp. 261-276, Company and securities law journal, Rozelle, N.S.W, C1

journal

Analyses, perspectives and jurisdictional overview

J Du Plessis, J Nel de Koker

(2017), pp. 1-31, Disqualification of company directors: a comparative analysis of the law in the UK, Australia, South Africa, the US and Germany, Abingdon, Eng., B1

chapter

The United Kingdom

A Rühmkorf, J du Plessis

(2017), pp. 32-68, Disqualification of company directors: a comparative analysis of the law in the UK, Australia, South Africa, the US and Germany, Abingdon, Eng., B1

chapter

Australia

T Blackie, J du Plessis

(2017), pp. 69-111, Disqualification of company directors: a comparative analysis of the law in the UK, Australia, South Africa, the US and Germany, Abingdon, Eng., B1

chapter

South Africa

N Kilian, J du Plessis, J Nel de Koker

(2017), pp. 112-154, Disqualification of company directors: a comparative analysis of the law in the UK, Australia, South Africa, the US and Germany, Abingdon, Eng., B1

chapter

The South African statutory derivative action: background, comparisons and application

J Du Plessis

(2017), pp. 261-281, Jopie: jurist, mentor, supervisor and friend, Claremont, South Africa, B1

chapter
2016

Halting the senseless civil war against white-collar offenders: "the conduct undermined the integrity of the markets" and other fallacies

M Bagaric, J Du Plessis, J Silver

(2016), pp. 1019-1090, Michigan State law review, East Lansing, Mich., C1

journal

Defences and relief from liability for company directors: widening protection to stimulate innovation

J du Plessis, J Mathiopoulos

(2016), Vol. 31, pp. 287-318, Australian journal of corporate law, Chatswood, N.S.W., C1

journal
2015

The case for and against mandatory gender quota legislation for company boards

J Du Plessis

(2015), Vol. 20, pp. 1-24, Deakin law review, Geelong, Vic., C1

journal

Claiming damages from members of management boards in Germany : time for a radical rethink and possible lessons from Down Under?

J Du Plessis, N Cordes

(2015), Vol. 36, pp. 335-353, Company lawyer, London, Eng., C1

journal

New trends regarding sustainability and integrated reporting for companies: what protection do directors have?

J Du Plessis, A Rühmkorf

(2015), Vol. 36, pp. 49-62, Company lawyer, London, Eng., C1

journal
2014

Multiple layers of gender diversity on corporate boards : to force or not to force?

J du Plessis, J O'Sullivan, R Rentschler

(2014), Vol. 19, pp. 1-50, Deakin law review, Melbourne, Vic., C1

journal

A shareholder's contractual right to a dividend and a company's oppressive conduct in withholding dividend payments: Sumiseki Materials Co Ltd v Wambo Coal Pty Ltd

J Du Plessis, Alevras, Stephen

(2014), Vol. 32, pp. 552-559, Company and securities law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1

journal

The payment of dividends : legal confusion, complexities and the need for comprehensive reform

S Alevras, J Du Plessis

(2014), Vol. 32, pp. 312-332, Company and securities law journal, Sydney, N.S.W., C1

journal
2013

An untapped resource : promoting regional legal practice

R Coverdale, L Jordan, J du Plessis

(2013), Vol. 87, pp. 41-43, Law institute journal, Melbourne, Vic., C1

journal
2012

Directors' liability for approving financial statements containing blatant incorrect items : lessons from Australia for all directors in all jurisdictions

J du Plessis, I Meaney

(2012), Vol. 33, pp. 13-24, Company lawyer, London, England, C1

journal

Company law developments in South Africa : modernisation and some salient features of the Companies Act 71 of 2008

J du Plessis

(2012), Vol. 27, pp. 46-72, Australian journal of corporate law, Chatswood, N.S.W., C1

journal

Mogale Alloys (Pty) Ltd v Nuco Chrome Boputhatswana (Pty) Ltd 2011 (6) SA 96 (GSJ)

P Badenhorst, J Du Plessis

(2012), Vol. 45, pp. 388-404, De jure, Pretoria, South Africa, C1

journal

Board diversity or gender diversity? Perspectives from Europe, Australia and South Africa

J du Plessis, I Saenger, R Foster

(2012), Vol. 17, pp. 207-249, Deakin law review, Burwood, Vic., C1

journal

Providing legal services to rural and regional small business : gaps and opportunities

R Coverdale, L Jordan, J du Plessis

(2012), Vol. 17, pp. 283-306, Deakin law review, Burwood, Vic., C1

journal
2011

Open sea or safe harbour? American, Australian and South African business judgment rules compared (Part 1)

J du Plessis

(2011), Vol. 32, pp. 347-352, Company lawyer, London, Eng., C1

journal

Open sea or safe harbour? American, Australian and South African business judgment rules compared (Part 2)

J Du Plessis

(2011), Vol. 32, pp. 377-383, Company lawyer, London, Eng., C1

journal
2010

A comparative analysis of directors' duty of care, skill and diligence in South Africa and in Australia

J du Plessis

(2010), Vol. 2010, pp. 263-289, Acta juridica, Rondebosch, South Africa, C1

journal

Revisiting the judge-made rule of non-interference in internal company matters

J du Plessis

(2010), Vol. 127, pp. 304-327, South African law journal, Capetown, South Africa, C1

journal
2009

Corporate law and corporate governance lessons from the past : ebbs and flows, but far from 'the end of history' - Part 1

J Du Plessis

(2009), Vol. 30, pp. 43-51, Company lawyer, London, England, C1

journal

Corporate law and corporate governance lessons from the past : ebbs and flows, but far from 'the end of history' - Part 2

J Du Plessis

(2009), Vol. 30, pp. 71-75, Company lawyer, London, England, C1

journal

Reflections and perspectives on the South African close corporation as business vehicle for SMES

J Du Plessis

(2009), Vol. 15, pp. 250-275, New Zealand business law quarterly, Wellington, N.Z., C1

journal
2007

German corporate governance in international and European context

J du Plessis, B Grobfeld, C Luttermann, I Saenger, O Sandrock

(2007), Berlin, Germany, A1

book

The stakeholder debate and directors' fiduciary duties

I Esser, J du Plessis

(2007), Vol. 19, pp. 346-362, SA mercantile law journal, Capetown, South Africa, C1

journal
2005

Principles of contemporary corporate governance

J du Plessis, J McConvill, M Bagaric

(2005), New York, N.Y., A1

book

The law of insider trading in Australia

G Lyon, J du Plessis

(2005), Annandale, N.S.W., A1

book

The rise and fall of supervisory codetermination in Germany?

J du Plessis, O Sandrock

(2005), pp. 67-79, International company and commercial law review, London, England, C1

journal

Corporate donations, the best interest of the company and the proper purpose doctrine

E Klein, J du Plessis

(2005), Vol. 28, pp. 69-97, University of New South Wales law journal, Kensington, N.S.W., C1

journal

Towards real shareholder participation in contemporary corporate governance

J du Plessis, J McConvill, M Bagaric

(2005), Vol. 57, pp. 528-533, Keeping good companies, Sydney, N.S.W., C1

journal

Possible remedies for shareholders when a company refuses to declare dividends or declare inadequate dividends

C Killian, J du Plessis

(2005), Vol. 1, pp. 48-68, Journal of South African law, Johannesburg, South Africa, C1

journal

The German corporate governance model in the wake of company law harmonisation in the European Union

O Sandrock, J du Plessis

(2005), Vol. 26, pp. 88-95, Company lawyer, London, England, C1

journal
2004

The German two-tier board and the German corporate governance code

J du Plessis

(2004), Vol. 15, pp. 1139-1164, European business law review, London, England, C1

journal

Directors' duty to use their powers for proper or permissable purposes

J du Plessis

(2004), Vol. 16, pp. 308-326, South African mercantile law journal, Capetown, South Africa, C1

journal
2003

Expanding criminal sanctions for corporate crimes-deprivation of right to work and cancellation of education qualifications

M Bagaric, J du Plessis

(2003), Vol. 21, pp. 7-25, Company and securities law, North Ryde, N.S.W., C1

journal

Reverberations after the HIH and other recent Australian corporate collapses: the role of ASIC

J du Plessis

(2003), Vol. 15, pp. 225-245, Australian journal of corporate law, Belconnen, A.C.T., C1

journal

Removal of company directors in a climate of corporate collapses

J du Plessis, J McConvill

(2003), Vol. 31, pp. 251-264, Australian business law review, Sydney, N.S.W., C1

journal

Reflections on some recent corporate governance reforms in Germany. A transformation of the German aktienrecht?

J du Plessis

(2003), Vol. 8, pp. 381-396, Deakin law review, Geelong, Vic., C1

journal

Funded Projects at Deakin

Other Public Sector Funding

Provision of legal services to small business in rural and regional Victoria

Prof Jean Du Plessis, Mr Richard Coverdale, Prof Anne Rees

  • 2011: $4,194
  • 2010: $41,948

Industry and Other Funding

Internationalisation of German corporate law and corporate governance - Anneliese Maier Research Award

Prof Jean Du Plessis

  • 2017: $69,465
  • 2016: $71,207
  • 2015: $72,560
  • 2014: $71,169
  • 2013: $59,417

Other Funding Sources

Mobile financial services: Regulatory responses in Australia, Kenya and South Africa - Edwin Tongoi

Prof Louis De Koker, Prof Jean Du Plessis, Mr Edwin Amos Awuor Tongoi

  • 2017: $15,000

Supervisions

Principal Supervisor
2004

Gregory Lyon

Thesis entitled: An Examination of Australia's Insider Trading Laws

Doctor of Juridicial Science, School of Law

Matthew Berkahn

Thesis entitled: Regulatory and Enabling Approaches to Corporate Law Enforcement

Doctor of Juridicial Science, School of Law

Associate Supervisor
2017

Akshaya Kamalnath

Thesis entitled: Gender Diversity on Company Boards: A Corporate Law Analysis

Doctor of Philosophy, Law

Qiuyue Jasmine Wang

Thesis entitled: The Enforcement of Insider Trading Laws in Australia: Reform Proposals

Doctor of Philosophy, Law