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Learning to do business in China

Students aiming for a successful business career know that today’s business graduates need an excellent knowledge of global markets. It’s especially useful to know one in particular: China – the world’s fastest-growing consumer market.

That’s why many international students – particularly those from Europe and the Americas – choose Macquarie for the insights the University offers into China and other Asian countries.

Macquarie’s International Study Tour unit is one example of how a globally focused curriculum and practical learning experiences take Macquarie students beyond the classroom into the real world of international business.

The unit gives undergraduate students the chance to learn about business operations in a foreign market through a series of seminars culminating in a two-week study tour. This year’s tour to China was hosted by academics from Macquarie’s China Business Research Network research cluster.

More than 40 students applied to participate in the tour, with the final group comprising 27 students from a variety of study areas including marketing, international business, demography and law.

The group met with senior executives at 16 companies in Shanghai, Suzhou and Beijing, including Qantas, Huawei and Chinese web giant Baidu. They also met with representatives of official government agencies including the Australian Trade Commission, as well as enjoying guided tours of important cultural sites.

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Unit coordinator and tour host Dr Yimin (Stephanie) Huang says it’s important for students to have an in-depth understanding of the political, economic and cultural environment in China if they plan on doing business there.

“China is a closely pursued market with a lot of new opportunities for business and personal career development,” Dr Huang notes. “But it’s also a very unique business environment, which can be challenging.”

“Macquarie staff who are active in research relating to China can offer students a better understanding of the various aspects of doing business there, including consumer behaviours and demographic changes in the country.”

“On top of this, our tour visits to companies allow students to experience the real China and understand how it has grown while the rest of the world has been in economic downturn,” she adds.

“It’s something that’s not easily learned in a classroom, which is why we like to deliver these kinds of unique learning experiences to Macquarie students.”


The International Study Tour unit is one of many units available to undergraduate students at Macquarie that are focused on learning through hands-on practical experiences. Others include Business Project, International Studies Internship, Public Relations Practice and Engineering Industry Experience.