China Business Symposium 2010
Managing Business Relationships and Risks in China
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Jointly organised by the New Zealand China Trade Association and the New Zealand Contemporary China Research Centre with generous support from New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, Victoria University, AUT University, FRST and Cathay Pacific.
The first ‘academic research matched by practice’ business symposium on China successfully took place in Auckland on 3 December 2010. The symposium was jointly organised by the Contemporary China Research Centre (the ‘China Research Centre’) and the China Trade Association (CTA), with generous support from NZTE, Victoria University, AUT and Cathay Pacific. The focal themes in the symposium were ‘building successful business relationships in China’ and “managing business risks in China”. The presentations and following panel sessions have stimulated deep and insightful discussion on the key issues NZ firms have to address when doing business in China. The event has attracted 77 participants from a good mixture of public and business sectors including universities and research institutes (18 representatives), consulting, investment and design (17), government agencies (14), Food & Beverage (10 including 6 from the wine sector), trade associations (3), household products (3), tourism, logistics and airlines (3), high tech (2), natural health and skin care (2), education (2), farm tech (1), animal products (1) and equipment manufacturing (1).
This event was the result of almost half a year’s hard work by CTA and the China Research Centre. Despite the fact that it was run for the first time, we have witnessed a good success of getting academics and practitioners together and presenting issues and solutions in an interactive and complementary way. Participants seemed to greatly appreciate this model. During and after the event, we have received some really positive feedback on the organising and content of the event. For example, one participant commented: ‘The conference was perfectly timed for me and I found it struck the right balance of relevant academic research/commentary but also practical business case studies”. Other comments included that “the whole day (is) really interesting and motivating” and “(the presentations) are frank, informative and instructive” and “providing food for thought on how we progress our business in China” etc.
The highlights of the day included a proactive and insightful observation of the relevance and application of Western research approaches in China and the emphasis on the emic (culture-specific) approach in doing research and business in China by the keynote speaker Professor Richard Fletcher. Also, the in-depth case study of building Chinese-style business models and relationships in China by Steven Le Febvre of Biovittoria in China. Other highlights included the gatekeeping view of relationship dynamics in NZ-Chinese business relationships by Dr Hongzhi Gao of Victoria University and also his presentation of risk management for foreign business in China on behalf of Professor Willem Burgers who did not make to the symposium due to delayed flights. Another highlight was the interesting and illustrative case study of 42 Below branding in China by Ben Shipley of Hill and Knowlton in Australia. In addition, Peter Moore of Fonterra gave a frank and reflective review of Fonterra’s experiences in managing risks in China, particularly in relation to quality control and strategic planning. Paul Davies addressed the strategic aspects of IP protection in China based on his over twenty years’ IP protection practice in Hong Kong and China. Amy Adams of Occam demonstrated different scenarios of cross-cultural employer-employee interactions and drew managerial implications for foreign firms in China. Associate Professor Val Lindsay highlighted the importance of long-term strategic commitment and deep engagement in China for NZ businesses’ success in China based on her FRST project on ‘Service Success in Asia’. Associate Professor Romie Littrell of AUT presented the results of his research on the preferred leadership styles in New Zealand and Guangzhou, China. Finally, Kefeng Chu of NZTE (the China Unit Director) reported the vision and strategic plan of NZTE in achieving the bi-lateral trade objectives set by the New Zealand and Chinese governments.
The event was reported by Weekly News of World TV (the Chinese TV channel in New Zealand); screened on 9.00PM 25 Dec on C304 and 10.00PM on C303 as well as on 9.15PM 26 Dec on Freeview CTV8. In relation to the symposium, an interview with Dr Hongzhi Gao on “China and New Zealand trade relations: Implications for NZ firms” prior to the symposium were broadcasted on Finance Weekly of WTV on 22 December 2010 6.00PM & 11PM on WTV C303 then replayed on 24 Dec 00.30AM on C304 and 4.00AM on C303.
Download Edward Carr's Presentation Poster
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