HSE Master’s Programme Prepares Students for Careers in Business and Policymaking in Asia
Set to launch in the fall of 2020, HSE’s new English-taught master’s programme ‘Economics, Politics, and Business in Asia’ is now accepting applications. Students of the programme will spend their first and fourth semesters at HSE University in Moscow and their second and third semesters at Kyung Hee University in South Korea. Programme graduates will receive a diploma from each partner university. Professor Denis Shcherbakov , programme Academic Supervisor, explains what students can expect in the new programme.
In Asia and with Asia
There is a growing demand on the global labour market for highly qualified regional specialists who are well-versed in the intricacies of doing business in Asia and with Asia. Last year, HSE University and Kyung Hee University opened a dual-degree bachelor’s programme ‘Economics and Politics in Asia’ for students who want to pursue careers in or connected with Asia. Now we have launched a dual-degree master’s programme. Thus, HSE now offers a full range of academic offerings for students interested in Asia.
In Russia, I have not seen any master's programmes like this one. Our new programme offers two areas of specialization: ‘Business and Management in Asia’ and ‘International Relations in Asia’. Graduates of the former will receive an additional MBA degree in Asian Business, while graduates specializing in the latter area will receive an additional MA degree in International Relations in Asia from one of South Korea’s most prestigious universities.
Notable Graduates and a Beautiful Campus
The programme’s choice of a partner university was no accident. In terms of area studies, Kyung Hee University is one of the best universities in Asia. Graduates of Kyung Hee include current South Korean president, Moon Jae-in, his wife, and many leading Korean diplomats, politicians, and top managers of large national and international corporations.
In addition to the obvious advantages afforded by the high quality of education at Kyung Hee, the convenient location and beauty of its campuses located in picturesque parts of Seoul and Suwon (located thirty kilometers from the Korean capital), its extensive educational resources, impressive library, and many other factors will also appeal to students.
Two Diplomas: Better than One
It would seem that there is an obvious alternative to studying in a joint programme, and that is simply entering an Asian university as a regular full-time student. However, experience has shown that Russian college graduates often experience disappointment when studying at Asian universities as regularly enrolled students due to having expectations that do not match reality. They have to navigate an unfamiliar educational system and way of doing things all on their own.
Our programme’s curriculum, which consists of one year in Russia and one year in Asia, ensures that our students not only adapt but thrive in their foreign university environment. A large part of this is the fact that they will already be acquainted with their professors before they go to South Korea. In addition, students will complete internships in Asia not individually, but as a group, which will certainly provide a sense of familiarity while they are in the country of their specialization.
In the Academic and Business Environments
During the first semester at HSE, our students will take a number of introductory courses, choose their advisor and thesis topic, and attend research seminars. They can also take an elective in an Asian language. It is during this time that they must select their area of specialization.
In the second and third semesters, students study at Kyung Hee University. Despite the fact that the programme is shared between two universities, it has one curriculum, and these semesters in South Korea are simply a logical continuation and the next stage of the programme. Importantly, students will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge in optional internships in companies and organizations located in Korea.
Upon returning to Moscow, students will complete additional internships and defend their master’s theses. Thus, during the entire learning process, they will be immersed not only in the academic, but also in the business environment.
Who Are the Teachers?
Our programme invites top scholars to teach our students as well as professionals from the industry who can enrich the academic process with their hands-on experience and cases from the field. The Russian component of the programme is led by professors and lecturers who have studied and worked in Asia for quite some time, which means that a lot of their courses can be adapted to the realities of Asian countries.
Ivan Deseatnicov holds a PhD in economics from Waseda University and for several years worked as one of the leading professors of the Master's Programme in International Business (MBA - IB) at the Japanese University of Tsukuba. His experience allows him to integrate examples specific to the Japanese context into his lectures on the theoretical aspects of Asian economies. Anna Kuteleva is a Chinese scholar with rich experience in teaching international relations not only in Russian, but also in Western universities.
A number of courses in the Russian component of the programme will also be taught by practicing professionals who hold leading positions in Asian branches of Russian companies.
I myself have worked for many years at the Russian Trade Office in Japan and know firsthand the intricacies of conducting business negotiations with Japanese partners. Currently, in addition to working at HSE University, I am also a visiting professor at Kyung Hee University.
The foreign component of our programme is taught by professors and lecturers from leading Asian schools that are part of Kyung Hee University’s Graduate School of Business and Graduate School of Pan-Pacific International Studies.
Internships in Russia and South Korea
Our students will have the opportunity to complete internships both in South Korea and in Russia—experiences which will certainly be impressive lines on their resumes when they graduate.
Arranging internships in Asia for our students will not come with any particular challenges. The fact is that contemporary Korean, Japanese, and Chinese companies have long moved past the boundaries of Asia. In the vast majority of large organizations, international employees are recognized as a source of new knowledge and new experience — that is why the cross-command system has been introduced especially widely.
And don’t forget about the networking opportunities. Students of the master’s programme partner schools are the future and possibly the next generation of successful businessmen, politicians, and civil servants from China, South Korea, and Japan.
The HSE Faculty of World Economy and World Politics is famous for its so-called ‘seamless leaning’, i.e., its multidisciplinary educational approach that prepares students to work in a variety of institutions, ranging from government to media. Students of our programme will likewise gain both theoretical expertise and practical skills that will equip them to tackle a range of professional challenges in the Asian context.
How to Apply
The programme welcomes applications for 15 fee-paying places for Russian citizens and 5 fee-paying places for non-Russian citizens. To apply, you must upload a portfolio onto your online HSE account, which will then be reviewed by the admissions committee. Proficiency in English is required for all applicants. For applicants interested in the ‘Business in Asia’ specialization, proficiency in an Asian language is additionally required.
We invite applicants who hold a bachelor’s degree in fields such as world economics, international relations, Asian studies, linguistics, and other related areas. Knowledge of an Asian language is a plus (or required in the above-stated instance). Thanks to our programme’s course offerings in Asian languages, students will find that they will be able to hone their language skills and reach a top level of proficiency that will allow them to effectively communicate with Asian professional partners by the time they graduate.