How Sino Tech Companies Seek Opportunities in Digital Age

Source:emlyon business schoolDate:2020-11-18

The Sino-US trade war in 2019 placed Huawei in the crosshairs of public debate. The outbreak of COVID-19 in 2020 will further impact the globalization of Chinese companies going forward. In the context of the ongoing pandemic worldwide and the extremely complex global economic and trade situations, the Huawei Goes Global Academic Forum (hereinafter referred to as the "Forum"), co-sponsored by the Chinese Globalization Association (CGA) and the emlyon business school, positively contributed to the public discourse on the rise of the Chinese technology enterprise and its global challenges.

The Forum was live streamed on November 13th. Participants, including Julian Chang, President of the CGA and professor at Tongji University, Wenxian Zhang, professor at Rollins College, Ilan ALON, ex-president of CGA and professor at the University of Agder, Norway, John McIntyre, professor at Georgia Institute of Technology, Christoph Lattemann, professor at Jacobs University Bremen, Germany, Donald (Andy) Purdy, Jr., Chief Security Officer of Huawei Technologies USA, along with several international scholars who contributed to the new academic book Huawei Goes Global, shared their insights on the new development opportunities for Chinese technology companies in the era of the digital economy.

Highlights from Industries, Academiaand Research Institutes

According to Professor Francis Schortgen at the University of Mount Union, USA, the challenges facing Chinese technology companies in their globalization drive stem from the U.S.-China structural rivalry.

Against the backdrop of a combination of the forces of globalization, dynamics of global competition and national innovation policy, as well as a relative weakening of U.S. innovation competitiveness in recent years, Chinese tech companies are bound to remain squarely in the crosshairs of geopolitical competition if China and the USA fail to find common ground through constructive cooperation.

Dirk Holtbrügge and Laura Kirste, both of whom are professors at the University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, analyzed Huawei’s role in establishing the 5G network rollout by applying a theoretical framework to the case of Huawei and discussing the dynamic power asymmetries of governments and multinational corporations, which provides theory-informed insights for practitioners and policymakers in the field of 5G.

Mario Glowik, Professor at the Berlin School of Economics and Law, Germany, pointed out in his remarks that Russia had recently moved into Huawei's focus as a result of the economic sanctions launched by Western countries. The research conclusions by Professor Glowik serve as a reference for Huawei’s positioning in the global high-technology telecommunication industry network.

As discussions moved from Western Europe to Central Europe, Agnes Szunomar, professor at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Joanna Karas, professor at SGH Warsaw School of Economics, and Iulia Monica Oehler-Sinca, professor at Romanian Academy, analyzed Huawei’s development in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), and the most important characteristics of Huawei’s operations, the mechanism for cooperation with host country institutions and its relationship with competitors.

Then, Serina Al Haddad and Sheryll Namingit, both assistant professors at Rollins College, introduced Huawei’s business and supply chain in Southeast Asia as well as the role that Huawei played in the development of existing infrastructure.

Screenshot of professor's activity

Sunny Li Sun, Associate Professor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell and William Chongyang Zhou, his doctoral student, shared their insight into the role and importance of Huawei’s “red team” strategy.  In the 1990s, Huawei established its Red Team, which, through analyzing and imitating its major competitors, helped Huawei to learn from its industry peers, ensure robust operation against a difficult external environment and improved organizational learning and resilience.

Lei Li, Associate Professor at Nottingham University Business School China and Sunny Li Sun, of the University of Massachusetts Lowell, pointed out that Huawei had encountered serious and prolonged legitimization challenges in many Western countries. They expounded, from the perspective of cross-border stakeholder engagement, on the trouble of Huawei in coping with the governments and media in developed Western countries, and offered relevant solutions.

Finally, Donald (Andy) Purdy, Chief Security Officer of Huawei Technologies USA, elaborated the opinions of Huawei Technologies on global cybersecurity issues that are of great concern to everyone. He called on government agencies, private institutions, academia and other experts from various countries to work together and cooperate in cyber security management and actively improve resilience and transparency for the global community.

Official Release of the New Academic Books on the Globalization of the Chinese Enterprises

Huawei, as a leading Chinese high-tech giant, has demonstrated advanced outlook and strategic awareness in its global expansion, which deserve close examinations not only by scholars but also all business practitioners. Fortunately, a two-volume academic set, Huawei Goes Global: Made in China for the World and Huawei Goes Global: The Regional, Geopolitical Perspectives and Crisis Management, edited by Wenxian Zhang, Ilan Alon and Christoph Lattemann , has just been published by Palgrave Macmillan, a global leader in academic publishing.

More than fifty scholars from around the world have collectively contributed theoretical research, case studies, data analysis, and empirical studies on the rise of the Chinese technology enterprise in the 21st century.

Within the framework of the trade conflicts between China and the US, controversies over economic sanctions, intellectual property disputes, and espionage and cyber security concerns, this groundbreaking work makes an important contribution to both the academic literature and the ongoing public discourse on Huawei.

CGA, an organization with a core mission of advancing  research on the globalization of China, is a major platform for global academia to study the globalization of Chinese enterprises.  emlyon business school, which currently has six international campuses, has also promoted and set globalization as a major development strategy and integrated the concept of globalization into the school’s curriculum design, the cultivation of students and alumni, research and development and so on.

Previously, when interviewed by the National Business Daily (NBD, a well-known business media group in China), William Hua WANG, Associate Dean of emlyon business school and Dean of emlyon business school Asia, said that Chinese technology companies do much better in innovation than in philosophical and basic-value-related thinking and practices. Professor Wang described the need to “walk on both legs”, which means that both, especially the latter, deserve special attention. If technology and digital companies desire sustainable development, then the above-mentioned problems should be addressed in the product design stage to avoid a rollercoaster-like development path.

Julian Chang, president of CGA and professor at Tongji University, noted that CGA was pleased to host this online forum to continue to bring academics and business elites together during this challenging time to hold conversations and exchange ideas.  Christoph Lattemann, professor at Jacobs University Bremen, thanked all speakersfor their presentations in the Forum and their valuable insights on the globalization of Chinese enterprises.

In the future, in partnership with the Chinese Globalization Association, emlyon business school will further contribute to China's economic and commercial progress by advancing globalization, integrating academic education with business practices, empowering industries and fostering new knowledge development.

China Globalization Association

The Chinese Globalization Association (CGA), Inc., a non-profit organization, was formed exclusively for charitable, scientific, and educational purposes. The Chinese Globalization Association is the successor to the China Goes Global initiative.

The first annual conference was organized in 2006 at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida. Between 2007 and 2012 annual conferences were held at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts. Since then, annual conferences were organized in different countries: Germany, China, Italy.