Asia-Pacific MBA Programs |

Asia-Pacific MBA Programs

By QS Contributor

Updated June 27, 2016 Updated June 27, 2016 provides an overview of MBA programs offered in the Asia Pacific Region.

The QS Global 200 Business Schools Report 2012

Year-on-year, business schools in the Asia-Pacific region are strengthening their role in the global MBA education scene.

For example, the number of Asian and Australian schools featured in the QS Global 200 Business Schools Report has increased from 10 in 2004 to 36 this year – a massive rise in just seven years. This rapid rise in the number of internationally recognized schools is indicative of the improving standards of Asian institutions, as employers increasingly recognize the quality of MBA graduates from certain schools the region.

Business schools in the Asia-Pacific region are looking at the standard of top US and European institutions as indicators of how they compare and where they could improve. Furthermore, the economic growth in some Asian countries, particularly in China and India has heightened the demand for more accredited business schools in the region in order to train the next generation of successful business leaders.

The QS Jobs and Salary Trends Report highlights that across Asia, and especially so in India and China, employers are embracing MBAs – a trend that is also evident in the QS Global 200 Business Schools Report through the rapid rise in the number of schools from the region that are represented.

China and Hong Kong are joining other major players in the region’s management education sector, namely Australia, Singapore and India. Since 2009, eight business schools in China and Hong Kong have featured in the rating:

China Europe International Business School (CEIBS);

Peking University, Beijing International MBA Programs (BiMBA);

The HKUST Business School;

Faculty of Business and Economics at the University of Hong Kong;

School of Economics and Management at Tsinghua University;

The Chinese University of Hong Kong;

Guanghua School of Management, Peking University;

School of Management at Fudan University.

HKUST Business School and CEIBS have featured prominently in the business school ratings since 2009. Sherring Ng, head of MBA programs marketing and admissions at HKUST Business School, says that a combination of its MBA curriculum and cultural diversity in its classrooms, are what makes HKUST particularly appealing to employers. “The HKUST full-time MBA programs are of over 25 nationalities and diverse industry background. The environment here enables students to absorb a wide range of cultures which help them to think out of the box throughout their post-MBA career development.”

“With intensive training through global business plan competitions, overseas exchange, internship and many other workshops, graduates are well trained to think from a wider perspective,” she says.

Lydia Price, associate dean at CEIBS says that its diverse MBA program attracts employers from all industries, “especially given our focus on both China and international business.”

“Investment firms value our graduates’ ability to assess a firm’s prospects for financial gain, consultants value their ability to advise clients on their future business, consumer and industrial product firms value their ability to design product lines and services for the future, and IT firms value the ability to design total solutions for client needs in the future,” she adds.

Business schools in India continue to climb up the ratings. The number of Indian schools featuring in the Asia-Pacific ratings has increased, with the addition of the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade. In an economy that is rapidly growing in global importance, the rise in employer opinion of MBA graduates is extremely promising in ensuring the development of future business leaders to sustain the fast-paced economic growth.

Australian business schools continue to impress MBA employers. In the Asia-Pacific region, 11 out of 36 business schools are located in Australia. Professor John Seybolt, former dean of Melbourne Business School, says that this is in part due to the country’s long European heritage and location, as Australia “is uniquely placed.”

“It is a bridge between both cultures, perfect for [English speaking] students seeking exposure to the emerging Asia-Pacific markets in the comfort of an international English speaking country,” he explains.

Given the size of their economies, Japan and South Korea are under-represented by business schools featuring in the ratings, but this may change as both economies are investing significant resources in their business education sectors. At present only three business schools from the two countries feature in the Asia-Pacific rating:

International University of Japan’s Graduate School of International Management;
Waseda Business School;
Seoul National University’s Graduate School of Business.
By contrast, Singapore, with a smaller landmass and local population size is home to four business schools in the Asia-Pacific rating, showing the international importance of the city-state, both geographically and economically:

INSEAD – Singapore;

NUS Business School;

Nanyang Business School;

Lee Kong Chian School of Business.

INSEAD - Singapore, Melbourne Business School and NUS Business School remain leaders in terms of employer reputation in the region. However, the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad leads the rise in reputation of Indian business schools, joining the top cluster of schools in second place.

The four business schools in the top cluster have scored very well in employer opinion, with employer index scores ranging from 86.3 to 96.5. This is far above the top cluster minimum threshold of 65, suggestive of the growing standards of business education in the Asia-pacific region. However, despite their growing prominence, most Asia-based business schools have yet to appeal to employers in other regions of the world.

The top 10 schools in the Asia-Pacific region are made up of institutions in the top and second clusters. Indian business schools have improved in international employer opinion considerably this year, moving up in both the Asia-Pacific rating, and almost all of the specialization ratings later on in this report.

The schools vying for the top 10 positions remain largely the same, with the exception of Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, which has jumped to the top 10 from 12th place last year. The Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore has shown gradual improvements in the ratings, climbing from sixth (2009), to fifth (2010) and this year missed the top cluster by just 2.7 points.

Overall, INSEAD - Singapore is the preferred choice among employers, retaining its position in the top spot of the Asia-Pacific rating for three years running. The schools that have shown the biggest improvements in employer opinion this year are two Indian schools, both jumping four places up the ratings:

Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad;
Indian Institute of Management Calcutta.
A number of business schools have gradually climbed up the ratings over the past few years, representing the rapid growth in global prominence of business education in the region, though it still has someway to go in order to be compared with that in North America or Europe. Both Peking University’s Beijing International MBA Programs and Sydney Business School have shown large improvements in employer reputation.

This article was originally published in November 2012 . It was last updated in June 2016

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