Women entrepreneurs are often seen as the driving force behind developing economies, so HEC Paris and Tsinghua University in Beijing have teamed up to develop a program to teach 450 new female entrepreneurs in China over the next five years.
The program is sponsored by bankers Goldman Sachs as part of its ’10,000 Women’ initiative. Perhaps a better title could have been taken from the Helen Reddy song, ‘I am woman, here me roar’ which could be taken as the anthem of the woman’s movement.
The Chinese program is based on the entrepreneurship track of HEC’s MBA and will last three and a half months.
The first program will begin in May 2009 with 50 participants, rising to 100 participants in subsequent years. Candidates will need to have an undergraduate degree and at least three years’ work experience.
The program is open to both women who want to start their own businesses and those who already run a business and want to develop it.
The program will use a mix of faculty from HEC and Tsinghua, as well as contributing lecturers from Goldman Sachs. Lecturers from outside China, who do not speak Chinese, will work with simultaneous translators in the classroom and in group discussions.
The Financial Times reports Oliver Gottschlag, academic director at HEC as saying, ‘We’re also acutely aware of the specific demands of running a business in such a rapidly developing market as China. It’s not just a question of simply cutting and pasting teaching techniques and case studies from the main HEC MBA — everything has to be tailored very closely to the local environment.’