Past Event

China’s Emerging Talent Strategy: Challenges and Opportunities

March 26, 2024
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
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School of International and Public Affairs, 420 West 118th Street, Room 918, New York, NY 10027

Rescheduled from February 29, 2024.

Speaker: Denis Fred Simon, Distinguished Fellow, Institute of China-America Studies (ICAS); Former Executive Vice Chancellor, Duke Kunshan University

Moderator: Xiaobo Lü, Professor, Ann Whitney Olin Professor of Political Science, Barnard College

Chinese leaders have placed a great deal of emphasis on developing an effective talent pipeline to drive their intended innovation driven economy. Cultivation of a cadre of high end talent involves a combination of domestic investments in higher education and recruiting international talent from abroad. Programs such as the 1000 Talent Plan have given way to several new initiatives including building three international talent hubs in Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen. Can these initiatives succeed? Can China meet its talent needs, especially in light of several critical demographic trends? Dr. Simon will discuss these developments and provide a sense of where China is headed.

Speaker's Bio: Dr. Denis Simon is a well-known expert on China's business, higher education, technology, and innovation strategies. He most recently served as Clinical Professor of Global Business and Technology at the Kenan Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also served as Executive Director of the Center for Innovation Policy at the Law School at Duke University. From 2015-2020, he held the post of Executive Vice Chancellor of Duke Kunshan University, a Sino-US joint venture in Jiangsu, China.

Dr. Simon has over 40 years of experience studying and working in China. Along with Duke, he has held senior academic leadership positions at Arizona State University, the University of Oregon, SUNY, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. He also has served as a strategy consultant to a large number of Fortune 500 companies and government agencies on issues related to China as Director of the China Strategy Group for Andersen Consulting (now Accenture).

Dr. Simon is a frequent speaker and writer on China's business, talent, technology, and innovation issues. He has published numerous articles and book chapters on these topics, and he is a regular commentator in the media. He is a highly respected expert on China, and his work is widely read and cited by academics, policymakers, and business leaders. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations. He also has served as a consultant to the National Academy of Sciences and the former Office of Technology Assessment under the U.S. Congress.

He received his MA in Asian Studies and PhD in Political Science from UC Berkeley and a BA in Asian Studies and Political Science from SUNY New Paltz. In 2006 he received the China National Friendship Award from then Premier Wen Jiabao in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

This event is hosted by the Weatherhead East Asian Institute and co-sponsored by the APEC Study Center.


  • To attend this event in-person, please register HERE.
  • To attend this event online, please register HERE.

Contact Information

Julie Kwan