News Article

News Article

BritCham Shanghai hosts roundtable with Professor Ken McPhail from University of Manchester

8 Dec 2023

On the morning of 29 November, BritCham Shanghai had the honour of hosting a roundtable meeting at the University of Manchester China Centre, with Professor Ken McPhail, Head of Alliance Manchester Business School, as the distinguished guest.

This event was part of the Chamber’s Global Visionary series, dedicated to cultivating robust business connections, offering access to global business insights, and facilitating meaningful interactions among our members and visiting senior management/VIPs from around the world. The occasion provided a unique opportunity for members to directly engage with influential leaders from multinational corporations, exploring potential avenues for collaborative growth and mutual benefit.

The gathering commenced with a warm welcome from Ms. Sherry Fu, Managing Director of The University of Manchester China Centre, who extended her greetings to all the attendees.

In this roundtable, Professor Ken McPhail explored the nuanced dynamics of risk and opportunity, driven by e-commerce digitisation and the evolution from globalisation to ‘Slobalisation.’ Discussions highlighted the imperative for new knowledge, working methodologies, and leadership styles, emphasising skills like imagination, disruption, innovation, speed, purpose, partnership, and change management.

The case study of Mastercard showcased a transition from humanitarian aid solutions as mere corporate social responsibility (CSR) to innovative business models. The narrative shifted from efficiency and effectiveness to trust and purpose, illustrating how Mastercard’s humanitarian technologies aimed at achieving “digital dignity.” Professor Ken McPhail discussed the China context, with a focus on sustainability initiatives such as the circular economy, ecological civilisation, and “beautiful China,” aligning with the populace’s aspirations for an enhanced quality of life. Green tech emerged as a strategic focus to navigate economic growth sustainably and increasing number of patents in green tech was highlighted.

Professor Ken McPhail concluded by emphasising the vast opportunities in business school networks and education, coupled with the recognition of a persistent skills and leadership gap. The imperative is to address the slower pace of organisational adaptation compared to the rapidly changing environment, emphasising the need to cultivate adaptabilty, innovation, and value creation for stakeholders.

The roundtable presented a distinctive opportunity for Chamber members to directly engage in exchanging insights with a globally recognised professor, known for his profound research in ESG and finance. This platform facilitated knowledge sharing and discussions, providing members with valuable interactions and the chance to delve into the expertise of the thoughtful professor.

Among the esteemed attendees were representatives from prominent organisations such as Shi Bisset and Associates Ltd, Crown Worldwide (China) Co. Ltd, Redfern Digital (Shanghai) Limited, Octave Institute, Barclays Bank PLC Shanghai Branch, SNIAP, Salix Group, Interlink and CREDIT AGRICOLE.

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