Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2017-2018 (archived)


Department: Business School (Business)


Type Open Level 3 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2017/18 Module Cap Location Durham


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • The aim of the module is to enable students to build up knowledge of the Asia-Pacific Rim economies and their businesses based upon in-depth analysis of different national and business management systems and how they compare.


  • Broad economic explanations for Asia-Pacific growth (i.e. orthodox versus heterodox approaches), understanding competing paradigms of development
  • Introduction to the theory of business groups, the dominant form of business organization in East Asia
  • Application of theory to key issues in Japanese economic and business development, including study of Japanese business groups (keiretsu), their evolution over time and the emergence of unique production systems in Japan (i.e. Toyotism/lean production)
  • South Korean development and organisational/management issues, including understanding the key features of chaebol
  • Mainland China, development and organisational/management issues, including transition strategies, the emergence of business groups (qiye jituan) and more recent growth of Chinese MNEs

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of the module, students should be able to:
  • to identify and conceptualize region-wide development trends/issues
  • to appreciate leading, individual East Asian "business systems" and their management
  • to translate that regional/national knowledge into more detailed implications for organizations and management in both East and West.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Model macro/micro level development
  • Appreciate emerging strategic management issues
  • Develop appropriate cross-cultural awareness and understanding
Key Skills:
  • Research for examinations
  • Take an active role in own learning
  • Problem solving and analytical skills
  • Review, Plan, evaluate
  • Take the initiative and work without supervision
  • Written communication - cricitcal analysis, presenting arguments and data

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Teaching is by lectures and seminars. Learning takes place through attendance at lectures, preparation for and participation in seminars, and private study. Formative assessment is by means of a written assignment. Summative assessment is by means of a written examination.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 21 1 Per Week 1 Hour 21
Seminars 8 4 in Term 1, 4 in Term 2 1 Hour 8
Preparation and Reading 171
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Examination Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
one written examination 2 hours 30 mins 100%

Formative Assessment:

One 1500 word assignment based on a case study.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University