Country profile: Australia's Asian connections

It's a long way to Australia from most places - except from Asia. This fact is often lost on Europe and America, but not on Australia or its business schools. This connection with Asia is one of the main reasons for doing an MBA in Australia. Considering the region's role in the world economy, this is not a bad place to start a global business career.

by Emilie Filou

Most of the top schools have campuses in Asia and exchange programmes with prominent Asian institutions. Macquarie Graduate School of Management (MGSM) in Sydney has campuses in Hong Kong and Singapore, Monash Graduate School of Business (GSB) in Melbourne has a campus in Malaysia, while Melbourne Business School (MBS) is a member of Partnerships in International Management, an international consortium of business schools that facilitates the international exchange of MBA and masters students.

Richard Speed, associate dean at MBS, says that students who come to Australia effectively get an Asia-Pacific MBA, but in a Western-style, English-speaking environment - which may be the best of both worlds. Asian students, who make up to half of all intakes, find themselves in an empathetic environment, and European and American students, for their part, find themselves drawn to the lifestyle and location: year-round sunshine, surfing after work and a world-class MBA.

Julian Teicher, director of Monash GSB, says that Australian business schools have not been as successful as they could have been in attracting students from the West. But the recent push by many to get triple accreditation - AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA - and a place in the international rankings may improve their prospects.

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