About SEM


The Advisory Board of Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management (Tsinghua SEM) was founded in October 2000. It is comprised of business executives, business school deans and renowned scholars (including Nobel laureates in economics) from all over the world.

China's former premier ZHU Rongji, the founding Dean of Tsinghua SEM, is an active honorary Chairman of the Board. There are currently 63 members on the Board, including 48 well-known entrepreneurs, 4 renowned business school deans, 1 former university president and 2 Nobel laureates in economics.

The mission of the Board is to enhance links between Tsinghua SEM and the rest of the world, to improve its teaching and research capabilities in economics and management, and to help its progress toward becoming a world-class school in economics and management.

The Board meets once a year in Beijing to discuss progress and the challenges facing Tsinghua SEM. The role of the Board members is to advise the Dean on a wide spectrum of issues concerning the strategic direction of Tsinghua SEM. Chinese State Leaders meet and communicate with Board members during the meeting. President Xi Jinping met Board members personally in 2013 and 2017, and he addressed the meeting via video link and offered his congratulations on the 20th anniversary of the Board in 2020.

Each year Tsinghua Management Global Forum and Tsinghua Students Dialogue with Board Members are held in conjunction with the Board meeting, which provides opportunities for interaction between the Board members and Tsinghua SEM faculty, students and alumni, as well as business executives from China. Since 2016, Tsinghua SEM Students Visit to Advisory Board Member Enterprises serial events have been initiated successfully. They provide Tsinghua students with closer perspectives on learning how leading global enterprises grow. From the beginning of 2019, Tsinghua SEM has held a dialogue between Advisory Board Members and Chinese Entrepreneurs event, which provides a critical platform for discussing major issues and challenges that global enterprises are facing.

Tsinghua SEM has successfully held 24 meetings since the establishment of the Advisory Board. These meetings provide a unique platform for communication between excellent overseas entrepreneurs, Chinese government and economic section leaders, and Chinese entrepreneurs, as well as education specialists. It also provides a window for excellent overseas enterprises to understand the modern Chinese economy and management education.

In annual Tsinghua SEM Advisory Board meetings, the Board members come to Tsinghua and offer pertinent advice for building Tsinghua SEM into a world-class school with great enthusiasm. The Board members have made many substantial contributions in developing strategies, establishing cooperation between the school and world-famous business schools, strengthening construction of the faculty, establishing a wider international partnership, employing famous international scholars as chair professors and distinguished professors, and setting up research institutes within Tsinghua SEM.

The first chairman (2000-2002) of the Board was Henry M. Paulson Jr., former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury. The second chairman (2003-2007) was Lord Browne of Madingley, former Group Chief Executive of bp p.l.c. The third chairman (2008-2009) was H. Lee Scott, Jr., former President and CEO of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. The fourth chairman (2010-2013) was John L. Thornton, Executive Chairman of Barrick Gold Corporation and Chair Emeritus of the Brookings Institution. The fifth chairman (2013-2016) was David M. Rubenstein, Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of the Carlyle Group. The sixth chairman (2016-2019) was Jim Breyer, Founder and CEO of Breyer Capital. The present chairman (2019 to present) is Tim Cook, CEO of Apple.

(Updated on October 30, 2023)