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Strategic management in Australia and China: the great leap forward or an illusion?

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to address issues related to strategic management in Australia and China, to compare similarities and differences across two countries. Design/methodology/approach ‐ Data were collected from structured surveys and interviews amongst managers undertaking Master of Business Administration study in China and Australia. Findings ‐ The research suggests that there is much to be done in enhancing strategic management. The poor positioning of both Chinese and Australian businesses indicates the need for new public policies and debate. Some directions might include encouragement of exports, rethinking and refining bilateral and multilateral trade agreements, e.g. the current FTA being negotiated between Australia and the USA appears to be based on political considerations more than economic. At national, regional and local levels there is a requirement for industry policy and systematic implementation. Small to medium enterprises need encouragement to operate strategically, with passion and commitment, for the benefit of the enterprise and the nation. Promoting and sharing good practice is one effective way to achieve this. In China, the issues are very similar. Local and regional governments in particular have enormous influence in shaping economic policy and business regulation. The new national policy agenda towards "green DP" rather than the more narrow GDP is another indicator of the need for renewed effort to broaden the strategic management agenda at national and international level in China. The full entry into WTO further underlines the importance of this requirement, particularly the need for a triple bottom line strategic approach. Originality/value ‐ This paper uses management survey data to offer a useful auditing mechanism and a mirror to existing practices and performance in both China and Australia.
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Keywords: Australia; Change management; China; Globalization; Strategic leadership; Strategic management

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2007-02-20

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