GRA 8206 Asian Business Trends (2019/2020)

GRA 8206 Asian Business Trends (2019/2020)

Course code: 
GRA 8206
Leadership and Organizational Behaviour
Course coordinator: 
Anders Dysvik
Product category: 
EMBA Global - Programme Courses
2019 Autumn
Active status: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Recent economic development in Asian countries (e.g. China, India) has forced companies to re-evaluate their strategies to adapt to the changes. What are the current financial and human capital costs of doing business in Asia and globally? What might future challenges be? How do firms compete to capture emerging business opportunities? How should firms strategically position themselves today to take advantage of key developments in the Asian and Western economies to sustain high corporate growth? These fundamental concerns will be addressed by the proposed Asia EMBA Programme, specially designed for BI Norwegian Business School, to be conducted by the Nanyang Business School.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

Gain insights into Asian perspectives on leadership and strategy. Gain insights into the tensions between stakeholders in multi-business corporations, and the implications for improving corporate governance. To gain understanding of marketing and branding in Asia as well as mergers and aquisitions in the Asian context. 

Learning outcomes - Skills

Develop executives' strategic leadership competencies that are crucial in the changing and competitive global business environment. Build cultural intelligence as a strategic leadership capability that will help manage global/local issues in a multinational work environment, create a global mindset that will help extract value from cultural differences and build alignment with global corporate strategy.Develop the capability to analyze, understand, and adapt to the behaviour of people from different societal, generational, or organisational cultures.

General Competence

Reflecting on the difference between Asian business culture and business cultures in the rest of the world.

Course content

Asia in the emerging global order and leadership in Asia 

Business journey to the East and applying Sun Zi Bingfa to strategic management and thinking 

Sun Zi Bingfa (also known as Sun Zi’s Art of War) is the most well-known Chinese military classic written more than 2000 years ago. Its value in influencing business warfare has never been disputed and it is must read text in all major military academies of the world. Of equal significance is its relevance to strategic thinking, business and marketing strategies and practices. This course seeks to relate the military philosophy of Sun Zi to the corporate world by providing new and different insights on topics like strategic leadership, teamwork and teambuilding, military and business intelligence, choosing battlegrounds and areas ignored by the enemy, strategy development and formulation, strategic controls, ethics, and management of human resources. It takes an oriental perspective in dealing with the various issues pertaining to strategy and seeks to broaden students’ creative and analytical thinking skills in relating and applying Chinese philosophical concepts to the modern world of business, with focus on strategic and marketing issues. With the increasing importance of China as an economic superpower and its entry into the WTO, more and more multinational corporations are interested to understand the mindset of the Chinese strategist. Sun Zi Bingfa provides a useful reference. This is because, to many Chinese businessmen and corporate strategists, the business world is likened to that of a battlefield. 

Leading with cultural intelligence 

It is a challenging job to motivate a workforce that is made up of people from different cultures. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to this difficulty. Management methods that work well for one culture may not work as well in another. To manage performance well, we need to pay attention to how cultural differences impact performance attributions, self-construal, employee motivation, and performance-related feedback behaviour. 

Suggested topics: 

(a) Common cultural dimensions 

(b) Cultural intelligence 

(c) Performance attributions 

(d) Self construal 

(e) Employee motivation 

( f) Feedback behaviour 

Asian branding 

This part of the module is dsigned for executive students with some degree of marketing and branding knowledge/experience. However, the range of concepts and materials we will be using should provide a challenging experience even for those of you who have branding backgrounds. The overall focus will be how branding and brands fit into the overall management structure, and how it drives value for businesses.  

Mergers and acquisitions  

In this part of the module we explore the reasons and motivations for mergers and acquisitions, and will examine the strategic considerations in planning and implementing a merger or acquisition, in either a friendly or hostile environment. The tools and techniques of valuation, including leverage buyout transactions will be reviewed. The acquisition process will be discussed in detail, including the confidentiality agreement, bid process, due diligence, closing and implementation. The aim is to provide an understanding of the strategic, cost, valuation, structure, financial, legal, accounting, negotiation and implementation issues associated with mergers and acquisitions.


Teaching and learning activities

This is a 6-days course delivered by Nanyang Technological University faculty and is a combination of lectures and disussion. 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours.  

Attendance to all sessions in the course is compulsory. If you have to miss part(s) of the course you must ask in advance for leave of absence. More than 25% absence in a course will require retaking the entire course. It's the student's own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class that is not included on the course homepage/ It's learning or other course materials.

This is a course with continuous assessment (several exam components) and one final exam code. Each exam component will be graded using points on a scale 0 -100. The components will be weighted together according to the information in the course description in order to calculate the final letter grade for the course. Students who fail to participate in one/some/all exam components will get a lower grade or may fail the course. Candidates may be called in for an oral hearing as a verification/control of written assignments.

Specific information regarding the points system and the mapping scale beyond the information given in the course description will be provided in class. This information may be relevant for requirements for term papers or other hand-ins, and/or where class participation can be one of several elements of the overall evaluation.

The course is a part of a full Executive MBA programme and examination in all courses must be passed in order to obtain a certificate.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.

Granted admission to the EMBA programme. Please consult our student regulations.

Exam categoryWeightInvigilationDurationGroupingComment exam
Exam category:
Form of assessment:
Class participation
Exam code:
GRA 82061
Grading scale:
Point scale
Grading rules:
Internal examiner with external supervisor
All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
40No -Individual 40% individual class participation.
Exam category:
Form of assessment:
Written submission
Exam code:
GRA 82061
Grading scale:
Point scale
Grading rules:
Internal examiner with external supervisor
All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
60No1 Semester(s)Individual 60% individual assignment.
Exam category:Activity
Form of assessment:Class participation
Grouping (size):Individual
Duration: -
Comment:40% individual class participation.
Exam code:GRA 82061
Grading scale:Point scale
Resit:All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
Exam category:Submission
Form of assessment:Written submission
Grouping (size):Individual
Duration:1 Semester(s)
Comment:60% individual assignment.
Exam code:GRA 82061
Grading scale:Point scale
Resit:All components must, as a main rule, be retaken during next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Continuous assessment
Grading scale: 
Total weight: 
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 6 ECTS credits corresponds to a workload of at least 160 hours.