Examination Notice

Hi guys,

As you can see, I have posted all my notes for IB. Sift out whatever you find useful, some information might not be as relevant anymore. For example, the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations started more than 3 years ago and was estimated to be completed in July 2012, but talks have been stalled (http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/kyodo-news-international/131201/japan-cannot-make-further-concession-us-tpp-talks-mini ; just one of the obstacles faced so far). I do hope that you are reading the current news on a regular basis to stay relevant, though it does not guarantee any help for the examinations. As mentioned in my previous post, the textbook is a safe bet. (no, I don’t take any sales commission from it, lol)

I remembered the lecturer mentioned to us that we, as business students, it is only our duty to read the newspaper everyday. Agree?

This is the final preparation week, if you haven’t started revising for it, please do not visit this blog praying for a miracle tip. Lol. Reason being, I have already uploaded all my notes to you guys, though I do have some more notes that I wrote on the academia articles, they are not with me right now! So, if you have any problem understanding any article, please make the extra effort to send it to me via email (sguomstudent@hotmail.co.uk). The only promise I can give you is I will reply within 2 days. 😀 Below are a few tips:

1. Read the title and the summary/abstract. Understanding what points the writer is trying to make. This make sound like a stupid tip but more than often, we are so absorbed (actually, bored) by the article we started reading blindly and wasted time reading the not as important information like the methodology and hypothesises. Have a good grasp of the concepts and most importantly, the conclusion. Another important information to remember is of course, the author(s) and the year that the article was published.

2. Do you want to me the master of one (few) or the jack of all trades but master of none? Time, unfortunately is not on your side now. If you are the ambitious type and want to study for all chapters, there is a major risk that you are over-stressing yourself and insufficient depth of knowledge to tackle any topics. That being said, it is only my personal opinion and everyone has a different studying style. 🙂 But sometimes it is just so hard to study chapters where we are totally disinterested or find it hard to comprehend,isn’t it?

3.  Nobody likes to read a boring essay. How willing are you to stretch yourself to write something that is not being taught (not out of context, please). Or are you confident enough to tackle questions not attempted by many? If you are the conservative type, as least…

4. Attempt to write neatly, or at least legibly. Yes, it is hard. But it is harder for the marker to understand what you are trying to say. You might have some really good points to make at the latter part of your essay, but you will only score well if the marker is able to read to that point.


5. At much as we don’t want it sometimes, we compare.

That is how the grades are given isn’t it? No marks moderation can be a good/bad thing. Just imagine yourself as the marker, and you have just finished grading a A+ essay. The next essay is of a B standard; how sure are you that you would give this guy a B? Will your judgement be affected because of the previous guy? Yes, the actual marker has a lot of years of giving grades, he/she should be fair and impartial. But that is only our assumption. Not trying to complicate a simple marking system, but isn’t it a more favourable situation if the guy before you scored a C/D and then the essay to be marked is written by you? Or should I say, a more desirable situation? How good this method is, we will never know.

Do you agree with me? If yes, I will leave it to you to interpret how this is a tip. Maybe you will know what to do. 🙂 If you disagree with me, I am sorry I wasted your 1 minute to read, but I do hope what I have wrote above make some sense! Once again, all the best for your paper next week!




China, India and Brazil: Tiger technologies, dragon multinationals and the building of national systems of economic learning

Lecture: Globalisation (Lecture 2)

Article:China, India and Brazil: Tiger technologies, dragon multinationals and the building of national systems of economic learning

Author: John Mathews (2009)


A very brief summary (my own interpretation), followed by some background information which may help you to understand the article better.

The main focus of this article and why it is a selected reading for this lecture is the existence of linkages amongst networks, that gives the opportunity for countries such as China, Brazil and India to build upon their capabilities and national competitiveness in the global market.

As they are developing countries, they could only rely on low cost production to attract established companies from developed countries to produce their goods. Through the 3 Ls (learning, leveraging and linking) of technologies, these countries were able to produce their own products and eventually become a competitor.

BIC were also able to gain power in the political world map after they gained their own area of expertise. E.g China- major manufacture exporter, India in IT services and Brazil in exporting and resources platform. They were also powerful enough to make their own stand and withdraw from the CAFTA and signed pacts amongst each other to conduct trade without the reliance the political power of the US and Europe. (an example of linkages and building industries themselves as highlighted by the author)

Subsequently, BICs were able to build on their capabilities that they have learnt and innovate, slowly moving away from the low cost production systems when they first started (page 21, “these activties are already mirgrating to the next low-cost platforms, such as Vietnam”). 

This is what we have seen from the factual examples demonstrated by Taiwan and Korea. “Taiwan, for example, showed how it is done in its creation of one electronics industry after another. The Taiwanese create a new industry, such as CD-ROMs, by securing the core technology, in this case pick-up heads and data storage media technology. They then identify the key imports of components and materials from Japan, and seek to innovate around these components, reproducing them or licensing them in order to remove import-dependence. The same process was in evidence as Taiwan built a flat-panel display industry, where again dense interconnecting value chains were constructed. (Page 20)” Korea’s examples: auto-mobiles (Kia, Hyundai), mobile phones (Samsung), screens/displays (LG).

This is why the author compares BIC to the East Asian Model because of the similarities in strategies and success.

To read more about East Asian Model, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_Asian_Tigers



China is a manufacturing export platform linked across hundreds of global value chains with the consumer markets of North America, Europe and Japan in a way that cannot be matched by any country.

Brazil are also building their export bases at a rapid rate, turning itself into resources platform for China and India and for the rest of the world. It is also expanding basic resource outputs like iron ores and processing these into steel, as well as becoming a world leader in agribusiness and most recently in biofuels.

India is focusing on exporting software and IT services, as well as other areas on high value-adding business process outsourcing, manufacturing products like automotive components and pharmaceuticals.

BICs are also gaining its own grounds, rather than trying to break into US markets to utilize their size. Brazil led cases against US and UN on commodities like sugar and cotton and also opens world trade in agri-products, blocked for decades by the countries in the North. These issues point to a new kind of multipolar globalization that is coming to prominence in the twenty first century.

Latecomer Developmental Strategies


  • Dislocation from advanced sources of technology
  • Knowledge and market dynamics

However, they do have potential advantages, such as not being burdened with past technological and organizational commitments, and being able to devise institutions that make up the deficits found in under-developed countries as they are able to capitalize on temporary lower costs.

Countries also compensated for late arrivals by the use of well-designed government interventions/protective regimes in the economy.

The energy issue – challenges bring opportunities

Because of their rapid development, the BICs have to confront the realities of impending oil shortages, as well as the increasing consumption. Out of this crisis there emerges opportunity: they can construct their development plans around renewable energy pathways. Latecomers will seek to compensate for their shortcomings in technology and market sophistication through institutional innovation that covered the ‘gaps’ of existing markets.


ü  Brazil’s advanced R&D institution for agricultural research and biofuels.

ü  India’s creation of Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy (needed to get around the constraint of fossil fuels).

ü  The creation of new Indian Institutes of Technology, which proved to be an important factor in the rise India as a IT industry.

Strategizing at Firm Level: Tiger Technology Leavage


Changhong acquired and imported an assembly line from a Japanese firm, and the Japanese company provided engineers to build the line, training Chinese engineers at the process. Changhong also co-operated with domestic R&D institutions and universities. It has actively internationalizing, exporting widely and setting up production facilities in Russia and Indonesia.

Lenovo, founded with 200,000 yuan was able to acquire IBM, a US computer maker in 2005. As of 2011, it has 21.5 of revenues, and is the second largest computer maker.

Huawei, the largest China-based networking and telecommunications equipment supplier, has over 110,00 workers have 46% employees engaged in R&D activites, with 20 R&D institutes in countries including US, China, Russia, Sweden and India. In 2010, Huawei has US$28billion in revenue.

Building National Competitive and Innovative Capabilities (Moving up the chain)

Creating a manufacturing platform has allow China to extend their reach further up the value chain. This is why Chinese industries are becoming such formidable competitors across the world field of manufacturing, and not just as low-end, low-cost, simple production systems, where China started. These activities are already migrating to the low-cost platforms, such as Vietnam.

In India, we see a different kind of platform being established in the form of IT-enabled services, which now range from simple operations such as operating call centres and customer response centres to more complex operations such as disaster recovery centres, legal, accounting, design and so on up to and including the very highest skill and professionally  trained operations, that have lead to the preserves of professions in advanced countries.

In Brazil we see the flowering of multiply-linked value chains in biofuels-ethanol, biodisels and bioplastics. These all derive from sophisticated initiatives in agriculture, in order to kick-start an industry.

As such it provides an attractive model for other countries after the BICs, such as Vietnam, Indonesia or Nigeria.

Lecture 2: Globalisation


PLC came out in one of the questions during my time. Remember, if you are going to purely memorise the textbook/notes, you probably will get the most a B. If you attempt any of the questions given without prior preparations, don’t be surprised if you receive anything more than 50. In my opinion, this lecturer is one of the more, if not the most strictest marker in this 2-year programme. I kid you not. However,  she is also not stingy with her marks. The results we gotten ranged between the two extremes of the spectrum. Likewise the same applies for International Business 2, another module conducted by the same lecturer.

Please make the extra effort to read, if I have to rank in terms of priorities, I would say: 1. Textbook 2.Notes & Articles (summarised articles given by lecturer/facilitator) 3. Academia readings (the more important ones are the case studies) 4. Daily Newspaper (focus on World news, it might be time saving for you if you already know what chapters you are going to focus on and pick up articles that are related or will enhance your background knowledge). For the extra hardcore or with a lot of spare time to spare and think that the reading materials are too little or wants to ace this module, you may want to read up on The Economist (I hope to share 1-2 latest articles).

See below for the notes that I have made. This blog has a number of views already but the main audience aren’t the people studying in this course! Please feedback/comment/share!! Your responses are what gonna keep me going to maintain this blog. Drop me an email if you need to.  sguomstudent.hotmail.co.uk



Congratulations on your completion of Quantitative Methods for Management examination yesterday!

International Business is next. My word of advice: be prepared to put in A LOT of effort to do well.

Failure rate is relatively high as compared to other modules. Tips/notes will be posted as and when time permits. Stay tuned!

Lecture 1. Introduction (Day 1)

Lecture 2. Globalisation (Day 1)

Lecture 3. Pre-Ricardian views on trade and the theory of comparative advantage (Day 2)

Lecture 4. The Heckscher-Ohlin Model and theory of trade (Day 2)

Lecture 5. Economies of scale, imperfect competition and the new trade theory (Day 2)

Lecture 6. The political economy of international trade (Day 2)

Lecture 7. The world trade system (Day 3)

Lecture 8. Regional economic integration (Day 4)

Lecture 9. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) (Day 5)

Lecture 10. The political economy of FDI (Part I) (Day 6)

Lecture 11. Political economy of FDI (Part II)/ Course Revision (Day 7)