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How the past leads to the future - 1st lesson of Tsinghua SEM Global Executive Program in China


Twenty participants from the US, France, Spain, South Africa, Singapore, etc. have just finished their first two lectures from the Global Executive Program in China (GEPC), a program hosted by School of Economics and Management Tsinghua University (Tsinghua SEM). This program is designed to provide business leaders with a comprehensive view of leading and managing business in China.

The business world is a constantly changing environment, but external forces such as COVID-19, political issues and country-specific policy changes have amplified the need for international professionals to be agile and open to change. China, one of the fastest-growing countries in the world, has its unique way of doing business. Decoding the dynamic Chinese economy requires business leaders to equip with skillsets and knowledge in a Chinese context, in the areas of business environment, investment, marketing, and the like. The GEPC acts as a solution for professionals who have a need to navigate these opportunities and challenges.

“This program (GEPC) will help me identify the most promising technologies and companies, which have driven growth and health impact in China, and who are ready to make international lead”, one of the participants said when asked about why chose to take this program.

On April 8, Prof. BAI Chong-En, Dean of Tsinghua SEM, Prof. LI Jizhen, Associate Dean of Tsinghua SEM and Ms. LI Jing, Director of Tsinghua SEM Executive Education Center had attended the opening of the program.

The two first sessions are grounded in the economic development of China, serving as a foundation for participants to understand today’s business environment. In the first lecture, Prof. BAI led the group to “travel back” to 1978 and witnessed the economic growth onwards. With the driver Growth Accounting, Prof. BAI mapped out the statistics and data in different periods and identified key events and actions that drove the growth over the past decades. Factoring into the past data, opportunities and existing issues, Prof. BAI addressed the future growth potential at the end of the class, which generated a heated discussion in the class.

Prof. BAI Chong-En

Dean, Tsinghua SEM

Mansfield Freeman Chair Professor of Economics

Prof. HUANG Zhangkai, the lecturer of the second session, delivered the topic on the Chinese Economy from a structural perspective. He drew an analogy between China and a large corporation, explaining that both have a need to grow – which was one of the underlying reasons for reforms and policy changes in China. Feedback from participants was that Prof. HUANG’s lecture deepened their understanding of the Chinese business environment.

Prof. HUANG Zhangkai

Associate Professor of Department of Finance, Tsinghua SEM

The next two sessions will be hosted in late April, in which participants will take a deeper dive into the political economy in China and focus on the development planning outlook.


Global Executive Program in China - Opportunity in Diversity: Decoding the Dynamic Chinese Economy

This program is designed to provide senior executives and business leaders with a comprehensive view of leading and managing business effectively in the fast-changing context of China, in a manner that is compatible with Chinese business practices, regulatory frameworks and consumer expectations. The 7-month program is divided into Live-Virtual Modules and On-Campus Modules (in Shenzhen, Shanghai, and Beijing). Participants can take the Live-Virtual Modules and On-Campus Modules independently. If you want to learn more about GEPC, please don’t hesitate to contact us (