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Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Join Hands with the World, Press Ahead with the Times

New Year's Letter

Dear CEIBS faculty, students, staff and alumni,

Happy New Year!

We are captivated by 2019’s first rays of morning light, heralding a New Year that promises to be one of exceedingly fruitful accomplishments and bliss for CEIBS. The New Year arrived, after the changing seasons, at the serene and graceful Shanghai Campus, the spacious and modern Beijing Campus, the green and luxuriant Shenzhen Campus, the Zurich Campus in the midst of snow mountains and crystal-clear lakes, at the sun-kissed Accra Campus and was welcomed by members of the CEIBS family all across the globe.

In 2018 we celebrated, together, the 40th year of China’s implementation of Reform and Opening-up, and together we wrote a chapter of landmark significance in CEIBS history. It was a year when CEIBS MBA Programme was ranked 8th globally in the Financial Times ranking, 3rd best two-year MBA Programme outside the US in the Forbes ranking, and 10th in the inaugural Times Higher Education/Wall Street Journal rankings of two-year global MBA programmes. Meanwhile, CEIBS Global EMBA Programme was ranked 5th by the Financial Times, earning the distinction of being the highest-ranked independently offered programme. It was also the year in which CEIBS and École hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) inaugurated the CEIBS-EHL joint Hospitality Executive MBA (HEMBA) programme to cultivate high-level management talent for the service industry to boost China’s economic transformation and upgrading. The school also successfully offered the Second Key Talent Programme for Chinese Companies Going Global (Modular), a programme designed to help Chinese companies go global by offering courses covering topics including politics, the economy and cultural affairs. The impressive showing in the rankings and innovative courses provided were just a few indicators of the remarkable strength of CEIBS, a leading business school in Asia and one that is increasingly renowned around the world. They are also embodiments of CEIBS’ motto – “Conscientiousness, Innovation and Excellence”.

CEIBS has brought together a world-class line-up of long-term faculty with more than 70 full-time professors from 13 countries and regions all over the world. In 2018, the already impressive faculty body benefitted from the addition of highly-regarded international statesmen including former Prime Ministers of France Jean-Pierre Raffarin and Dominique de Villepin, as well as former Director-General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Pascal Lamy. All three joined the CEIBS faculty as Distinguished Professors. Meanwhile the faculty continued to excel, amassing honours in and outside of the field of academia. Some examples: Prof. Sheng Songcheng was appointed counsellor of the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, Prof. Jiing-Lih Larry Farh was among the top 1% of the most cited researchers, and Prof. Zhao Xiande won the Emerald Literati Award for Excellence. In addition, for the third consecutive year the School surpassed all others in the category of Business, Management and Accounting on the global list of the most cited Chinese researchers, with CEIBS faculty making up one third of the list. A combination of exceptional academic accomplishments, rigorous scholarship, diverse cultural backgrounds and unique life experiences creates a unique team of academics fully versed in interpreting Chinese best practices and spreading Chinese wisdom to the world – all within a global context, making it possible for CEIBS to offer an unparalleled learning experience.

As a pioneer of the case teaching method in China, CEIBS took the lead in establishing the Global Platform of China Cases. To date it houses more than 1,200 China-themed cases that are widely used in business schools both at home and abroad. To encourage the China-themed case teaching method, CEIBS hosted several Case Master Development Camps throughout the year, providing almost 800 teachers from various domestic and overseas business schools with training on the case teaching method. Abundant high-quality cases converged to form a mirror for CEIBS, reflecting the now, foreseeing the future, and seeking truth in a changing world. In 2018, CEIBS also created the Real Situation Learning Method (RSLM), a bridge between theory and practice that takes professors and students to the frontlines of the world of business by placing them at the centre of the enterprises being studied.

While toiling in its quest for academic excellence, CEIBS remained true to its roots as a joint venture for management education co-founded by the Chinese government and European Union. It also continued to shoulder its unique historical mission of becoming a platform of economic and cultural exchange and cooperation between China and the rest of the world. In 2018, under the broad CEIBS Insights project, the school staged the 4th Europe Forum series of events in five major cities, bringing together global players to explore cutting-edge topics including the digital economy and artificial intelligence (AI); and it continued to invite renowned local and international figures to share their wisdom and insights at the popular Master Classes series of lectures. During the inaugural China International Import Expo in Shanghai, CEIBS co-organised an international forum focused on China’s role and influence in rebalancing the world economy. It also held the CEIBS Insights 2018 Receptions in Beijing and Shanghai, discussing future cooperation between China and Europe with representatives from European embassies and consulates, the Fondation Charles de Gaulle, as well as multinational enterprises. Each exchange of wisdom and thought sharing has elevated CEIBS’ China Depth and Global Breadth to a higher level; at the same time consolidating, expanding and enriching CEIBS as a platform of Sino-international communication and collaboration.

In addition to transmitting knowledge to the business world, CEIBS also conveys faith and virtue. It is a responsibility the school has willingly embraced ever since its establishment, and 2018 was no different. In keeping with its long-standing focus on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), CEIBS hosted the 2018 IWEC Conference – a platform for the growth of global women businesses. And, working together with the CEDAR Programme, the school took students to poverty-stricken mountainous areas in China to see how public-good projects can be both virtuous and financially rewarding. Other initiatives included staging the 2nd CEIBS Global Impact Investing Forum, and releasing the 2018 Corporate Social Responsibility Index for Chinese Listed Companies. Now all eyes are on the CEIBS Alumni Association, which has a CSR theme for its annual meetings, when they come together in the Spring of 2019 to be updated on companies’ latest practices, the green economy, sustainable development, etc.

At this moment in time, the human race is experiencing multiple changes; there are shifts in the economy, in technology and in our beliefs. The experiences gained from the past 40 years of Reform and Opening-up have endowed China with the confidence to face uncertainty. As the Ming Dynasty Chinese philosopher Wang Yangming said, nothing in the world can ever be placed on hold, there is constant change; but once one focuses on one thing, “however the world changes, one can always remain at ease”. This holds true for a country, it is also true for a school. Looking back on the past 24 years, CEIBS, an important result of China’s Reform and Opening-up policy in the education sector, has written a story of success. It proves that in the grand process of economic globalisation, as long as one keeps abreast of the times, consistently works hard and dares to innovate, a mighty force will ultimately break loose to work miracles.

As 2019 slowly unfolds and we write the first few lines of a new chapter in the school’s history, we are deeply convinced that CEIBS has the power to work miracles, because of the unswerving support of the entire CEIBS community and the great era marked by a new round of Reform and Opening-up. CEIBS will continue to take root in China, bring together the East and the West, and strive to be a globally respected leading business school, while cherishing a passion for education and doing good for society. With our sights set on new heights, we embark on a new journey. Let us stick to the school’s positioning of “China Depth, Global Breadth” and carry on the CEIBS spirit of “Conscientiousness, Innovation and Excellence”. Together let us join hands with the world, and press ahead with the times.

CEIBS Presidents
Prof. Li Mingjun     Prof. Dipak C. Jain