CHINA> Regional
China central to expansion of Duke Univ.
By Lei Xiaoxun (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-10-09 09:50

Despite a business world currently gripped by fear and panic, Duke University's Fuqua School of Business is initiating an ambitious global expansion plan mainly targeting China.

Shanghai is high on the US university's expansion list, which is "much larger than just Fuqua", Blair Sheppard, dean of the business school, told China Daily.

"Shanghai is going to be New York in east Asia, or you might say New York will be Shanghai in the US in two or three years," Prof Sheppard said.

Although the full scale and details of Duke's China expansion are yet to be formally announced, Sheppard said Fuqua's China foray would be "significant, large scale".

The overall estimated budget for Fuqua's global expansion is $500 million and includes facilities in Shanghai, New Delhi, Dubai, St Petersburg, London and Johannesburg.

Sheppard revealed that more would be spent on China than anywhere else.

Fuqua is the most productive research school per capita in the US and its networks will allow Chinese firms, executives and students go global faster.

Meanwhile, Fuqua wanted to understand the dynamics of the Chinese market and the strategies Chinese firms deploy to engage the world.

Sheppard said that without China, Fuqua's global outpost plan would fail, because it is the country most likely to have a dramatic influence in both main and margin markets.

"The change will come from China," he said. "And Fuqua will bring a Chinese perspective to the larger global debate."

In order to improve business education, Sheppard said the school must come to understand the unique Chinese point of view.

The school hoped the research activities will begin on its China campus this year, with alumni and customer activity to begin by spring next year.

Once the partnership is formally announced, Fuqua will immediately kick-start the China expansion plan.

"We are putting all the things in place, so that we can make a start and turn the lights on the next day," Sheppard said.