Telfer EMBA connects Chinese delegation to Ottawa business community

“Guanxi,” a traditional Chinese term, refers to the networks and relationships that facilitate business dealings.

The Telfer School of Management’s Executive MBA program demonstrated its commitment to guanxi and Chinese connections this week when, for the third time in as many years, officials hosted a delegation from Sun yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, China.

It was part of a one-week academic exchange designed to foster relationships between the two cities and their delegations.

In partnership with the mayor’s office, Telfer EMBA hosted a dinner at the Chateau Laurier on Wednesday night for its international delegates, alumni and local business leaders.

Mayor Jim Watson, who was on hand to kick off the dinner, mentioned in a speech how the city has maintained connections with the people and government of China through initiatives such as Telfer’s program as well as several trade delegations and the establishment of its only sister city agreement with Beijing.

Louis de Melo, the University of Ottawa vice-president of external relations, told the crowd that the exchange was designed to foster business growth in the EMBA programs’ respective communities and signalled a continued effort from the university to go global.

“It is really critical for institutions these days to expand their collaborations internationally,” he said.

In addition to lectures and networking events, delegates from Sun yat-Sen had the chance to experience Ottawa’s culture with visits to Parliament Hill, the ByWard Market and a zipline ride just outside of the city.

Delegations from Telfer EMBA attend a similar exchange in Guangzhou each summer.