sydney harbour bridge china

Business in China Forum

‘Strategic HR Solutions for Australian Firms in China’

  • Conference overview
  • Event details
  • Speakers
  • Sponsors

The UNSW School of Management will be hosting a forum on ‘Strategic HR Solutions for Australian Firms in China’. The event is also supported by the UNSW Confucius Institute, the UNSW Business School and Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM) Executive Programs.

The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement greatly enhances opportunities for Australian companies to develop their presence in China. However, China’s booming economy has generated chronic skills shortages and rising employee expectations of improved treatment. Moreover, recent labour laws and government labour market policies have made people-management more complex, particularly for foreign-invested firms.

This event will help participants develop people management knowledge and skills relevant to setting up or expanding their operations in China. For Australian services and high-tech firms taking these opportunities, understanding how to manage in China’s rapidly changing labour market, is crucial for success.

Critical issues include how firms’ human resource management (HRM) professionals deal effectively with:

  • Shortages of managerial, professional and skilled labour
  • New employment laws that provide greater protections for employees and unions
  • The HR effects of disparities in regulation and culture across China’s cities and provinces, and
  • Employee motivational challenges resulting from China’s one-child policy.

This event addresses these issues from the basis of current, high-quality research and high-level professional experience in a practical forum that gives you the opportunity to participate. The event will combine keynote presentations with panel discussions and hands-on, group case studies related to these pressing HRM issues.

The keynote speakers include high-level executives, entrepreneurs and academics with deep knowledge of the contemporary Chinese business environment. They will offer predictions and recommendations on these critical HR issues.

This is a great opportunity for participants to discuss relevant HRM Chinese Business issues with these experts.

Topics include:

  • HRM, work and employment in China: current and future issues.
  • China’s future professional and managerial workforce: Perspectives from the business and management education.
  • Challenges for CEOs and HR leaders on the changing talent dynamic in China and talent management.
  • Set-up HR Challenges, even for the initiated.
  • Disparities in regulation and culture across China’s cities and provinces
  • Motivational challenges resulting from China’s one-child policy

Who should attend?

China-focused entrepreneurs, executives and managers from:

  • Banking and finance industry firms
  • Professional services firms (Legal, Accounting, Management Consulting)
  • IT start-ups (including firms in Edutech, Fintech, Cyber Security)
  • Infrastructure funds
  • Engineering and Architectural firms
  • Born global firms across industry sectors

Why attend?

The symposium provides a forum for participants to:

  • Learn about people management solutions to succeed in China
  • Learn of recent developments in the field
  • Engage in Q&A with expert speakers
  • Exchange ideas
  • Enhance networks

In addition, participants will be given case study solutions and copies of supporting materials and recommended readings.

For further information, contact:

Professor Peter Sheldon
School of Management, UNSW Business School

Ms Tanya Allan
School of Management, UNSW Business School

  • Friday, 21 October 2016
  • The Sydney Boulevard Hotel, 90 William Street, Sydney NSW 2011
    • Networking Breakfast
    • 7.30am to 8.00am
    • Forum
    • 8.00am to 12.00pm
    • Networking Lunch
    • 12.00pm to 1.30pm

From the twenty-fifth floor of the Sydney Boulevard Hotel, attendees will enjoy stunning views of Sydney Harbour at the networking breakfast and lunch. The forum will be held in the privacy of the Grand Ballroom with registrations opening at 7.00am.

Ticket Prices

All ticket prices are inclusive of both the networking breakfast and lunch.

  • Early bird $180.00 per head (until 19 October 2016)
  • Standard $240.00 per head


  • UNSW Alumni: 5% discount will be given to UNSW Alumni attendees
  • Group Bookings: $150.00 per head for a group of three (3) or more

Register For The Event

This event will help participants develop people management knowledge and skills relevant to setting up or expanding their operations in China successfully.

The forum, addresses issues from the basis of current, high quality research and professional experience, in an environment that gives participants the opportunity to engage, discuss and share.

The keynote speakers are China-experienced high-level executives, entrepreneurs and academic experts with deep knowledge of the contemporary Chinese business environment.

Register for the event

Event Program

Time Event
7:00 – 8:00 Registration
7:30 – 8:00 Networking Breakfast
8.00 - 8.15 Acknowledgement of Country

Welcome and Opening Forum
Professor Chris Styles, Dean, UNSW Business School, UNSW

Welcome & Introduction
Master of Ceremonies: Professor Peter Sheldon, UNSW School of Management, UNSW Business School, UNSW
8:15 – 10:15 Session 1: Panel Presentations and Open Panel Discussions with the Audience

Moderator: Prof. Karin Sanders, Head of School of Management, UNSW Business School, UNSW

Dr Jane Qiu, Senior Lecturer School of Management, UNSW Business School and AGSM Fellow, UNSW
Assoc. Prof. Junfang (Emma) Xi (UNSW Confucius Institute)

‘Motivational challenges with the new generation of Chinese employees’
Ms Bing Liu, Senior China Adviser, Australian Trade and Investment Commission (AusTrade)

‘China’s future professional and managerial workforce: Perspectives from the business and management education’
Mr Joseph Healy, Former Group Executive NAB, Global Business Banking

“Feeling like a foreigner in my old home-town' - Set-up HR Challenges, even for the initiated’
Mr Benjamin Sun, Managing Director, Think China
10:15 - 10:35 Morning Tea
10:35– 11:55Session 2: Case Study Workshop

Chair: Frank Kennedy

Dr Jane Qiu, Senior Lecturer, School of Management, UNSW Business School and AGSM Fellow, UNSW

Associate Professor Junfang (Emma) Xi, UNSW Confucius Institute

Sara Cheng, Senior Manager, China Practice, NSW Business Chamber (trading as Australian Business Chamber for the global market)

Participants engage in round-table, team problem solving discussion on pre-supplied case studies. Outcomes and solutions are discussed with feedback from members in the Session 1 Panel Presentations.
11:55– 12:00Conclusion
Closing of Forum

Professor Peter Sheldon, UNSW School of Management, UNSW Business School, UNSW
12:00 – 13:30Networking Lunch

Keynote speakers:

Ms Bing Liu

Senior China Adviser, Australian Trade and Investment Commission (AusTrade)

Liu Bing returned to Australia early this year from her previous role as Acting Senior Trade Commissioner/Deputy Consul General Shanghai. Bing is now the Senior China Adviser heading the China Hub in Austrade’s Sydney office.

While in Shanghai, Bing managed the Austrade East China network of offices by providing business opportunities and services for Australian entities in trade, education and inward investment. Bing was also the team leader of Austrade’s China financial services team, assisting Australian financial services business operations in China and enhancing Australian brand awareness and promoting Australian industry capabilities in China.

Prior to Shanghai, Bing had worked in similar roles in both Guangzhou and Beijing at the Australian Consulate in Guangzhou and the Australian Embassy in Beijing respectively from 2004-2012.

Bing holds a bachelor degree of Medicine from China and a bachelor degree of Nursing from Australia.

Mr Joseph Healy

Co-Founder, Judo Capital and Former Group Executive NAB, Global Business Banking

Joseph Healy is a career international banker with a deep, long-term engagement with China. Before coming to Australia in 1998 to take up a senior position with the ANZ Bank, he worked at Lloyds Bank, and in more senior roles at Citibank and CIBC. His postings included London, Europe, New York and Auckland. In 2004, he became ANZ’s Managing Director, Global Client Relationship Group. He joined National Australia Bank in 2007 and, between 2008 and 2014, was Member of the Group Executive Committee reporting to the CEO with direct responsibility for the bank’s largest division, Business Banking in Australia, Asia (9 countries), London and New York branches (Staff 6,500). In this role, he was responsible for SME, Corporate, Institutional, Financial Institutions and Private Banking.

Author of Corporate Governance & Wealth Creation (Dunmore, 2003), Joseph is a Member of the Advisory Council to Australian Universities’ Vice Chancellors on academic standards for finance courses. Joseph holds five Masters degrees including an MSc (Finance) London Business School and an MSc International Management (China), SOAS, University of London. In 2015, he completed an MA in Contemporary Chinese Studies, University of Nottingham, Ningbo China. Joseph is also Board Director, Football Federation Australia. Joseph's new book, 'Chinese Management in the Global Economy - Can they Succeed?' will be published in 2017.

Mr Benjamin Sun

Managing Director, THINK CHINA

Benjamin is a digital marketer and researcher with extensive knowledge in Chinese digital marketing strategy, engine optimisation and manage online marketing campaigns. He is undertaking his doctoral degree at the University of Sydney and also the co-founder and Managing Director of THINK CHINA Consulting.

Benjamin’s company THINK CHINA is a team of highly experienced professionals who have extensive knowledge across a wide range of Digital China disciplines. The primary focus is using data to help their clients to develop and deepen the relationship between their brands and Chinese consumers – to drive consumer actions through quality content and strategic thinking, to deliver value and measurable results.

THINK CHINA acts as the think tank for their clients, helped many Australia businesses conduct and analyse market research through digital and online channels, to give them the strategic intelligence they need to make smarter decisions.

Benjamin works closely with research institutes in Australia and publishes articles containing new ideas and fresh perspectives on matters affecting Australian businesses operating in Greater China region.


Professor Peter Sheldon

Master of Ceremonies
UNSW School of Management, UNSW Business School, UNSW

Peter Sheldon, a Professor in the School of Management, UNSW, primarily researches on industrial relations and human resource management, including in South Korea, Italy, Singapore and Australia. His more recent work has particularly focused on HRM in China. One of the earliest researchers to indicate China’s emerging skill shortages, he has also pioneered research on how, in China , local factors are particularly influential in shaping challenges and opportunities facing employers and employees. Some of this work appears in Peter Sheldon, Sunghoon Kim, Yiqiong Li and Malcolm Warner (eds) (2011), China’s Changing Workplace: Dynamism, diversity and disparity, Routledge, London.

Professor Karin Sanders

Head of School
UNSW School of Management, UNSW Business School, UNSW

Karin Sanders, a Professor of Human Resources and Organizational Behavior is the Head of School of Management in the UNSW Australia Business School, UNSW. She received her Ph.D from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands. Karin’s research focuses on the HRM process approach -in particular, the impact of employees’ perceptions and understandings (attributions) of HRM on their attitudes and behaviors. Her recent work has focused on studies and research on HRM in China. Her research has been published in such scholarly outlets as the Journal of Vocational Behavior, Organizational Studies, HRM, HRMJ, and Academy of Management Learning & Education and South China Morning Post. She is an Associate Editor of International Journal of HRM.

Associate Professor Junfang (Emma) Xi

Chinese Director, UNSW Confucius Institute

Dr. Junfang Xi (Emma) is now the Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute at UNSW Australia, and teaches at the Business School, UNSW Australia. Emma is also an associate professor of International Economics and Trade at Antai College of Economics and Management, Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU).

Emma received her Ph.D. in Enterprise Management and her masters and B.S. degrees in International Trade from Antai College, SJTU. Her research interests focus on international trade rules, WTO rules, and regional economic integration. She was awarded the Excellent Teaching Achievement of Shanghai Municipal Government in 2005 and the Excellent Teacher of Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 2010.

Emma was co-director of the University of Southern California-Shanghai Jiao Tong University Global EMBA (GEMBA) Program from 2006 to 2012. As co-faculty of Theme 7 of GEMBA program, she led the students to conduct company live-case analysis in Japan, Korea, India and South-East Asian countries, such as Thailand and Vietnam. She has also been a visiting scholar at Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California (USC) and at Sauder Business School, University of British Columbia (UBC), Canada.

Dr Jane Qiu

Senior Lecturer, School of Management, UNSW Business School and AGSM Fellow, UNSW

Dr. Jane Qiu’s research focuses on China business, firm strategy and multinational corporations (MNCs). She has published articles in journals such as Journal of Management Studies, the Academy of Management Perspectives, Long Range Planning and Management International Review. Jane teaches MBA, EMBA and postgraduate courses on China business and management, Multinational Corporation and global strategy. Jane possesses a broad range of industrial experience in China. Prior to her academic career, Jane worked in both private and public sectors in China. She has held business consulting, administrative management and project management positions. She was involved in large foreign direct investment projects and had assisted MNCs such as CSR, LG, Siemens and P&G to establish or expand their operations in China. Jane also once worked as professional interpreter and foreign affairs specialist for the Chinese government.

Frank Kennedy

Executive Director, AGSM Executive Education, AGSM @ UNSW Business School, UNSW

Frank is the Executive Director for AGSM Executive Education, responsible for leading all functions related to the engagement, design, delivery and measurement of AGSM @ UNSW Business School’s executive education portfolio.

He brings a wealth of experience in leadership and learning and development, gained in both industry and tertiary education. Prior to joining AGSM Exec Ed, Frank built an impressive career in the human resources and organisational development spaces, spanning senior regional leadership roles in the banking and finance sector across the Asia Pacific.

Frank holds a degree in adult education.

Sara Cheng

Senior Manager, China Practice, NSW Business Chamber

Sara Cheng is the Senior Manager, China Practice, NSW Business Chamber (trading as Australian Business Chamber for the global market). She has over 20 years' business experience in China and Australia, specialising in China business strategy development, distribution channel management, and merger & acquisitions. Sara held senior management roles with a large Chinese international trade company and an international organization in China before she migrated to Australia 15 years ago.

As Senior Manager, China Practice with Australian Business Chamber, Sara manages the China team in both Australia and China to assist Australian businesses to trade or invest in China. She has assisted over 300 Australian businesses to do business with China successfully. These have included some iconic brands across a broad range of industry sectors.

Sara has a strong and extensive network of Chinese government agencies and industry bodies at the national, provincial and municipal levels and has been instrumental in the strategic partnership establishment with the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade. Sara actively promotes bilateral trade and investment between China and Australia and serves as Vice President on the Board of Australia China Business Council NSW. She also co-authored the book Engaging China-The Realities for Australian Businesses.


AGSM Executive Programs at UNSW

Business in China Forum is proudly supported by:

Confucius Institute, UNSW
Confucius Institute, UNSW
Export Growth