Newcastle University Business School

Event Item

Professions and Professional Services in China

A Professional, Work and Organisation (PWO) Research Group Seminar

Date/Time: Thursday 30 March 2017, 9.00-16.40

Venue: Partners' Room 8.10, Newcastle University Business School

In recent decades, professional service firms (PSFs) have been undergoing rapid expansion worldwide. China, as the world’s second largest market, is an appealing destination. Following the Brexit vote, there is an urgent need for the UK PSFs to look beyond the traditional trading partners in Europe and boost their performance in the fast-growing, emerging markets. Therefore, Chinese market becomes even more important for the sustainable growth of PSFs than ever before.

In this event, we discuss:

  • The evolution, regulation and characteristics of Chinese professional services market, particularly in the accounting and legal market
  • The challenges that international PSFs face as they expand to and operate in the Chinese market
  • The organisational strategies and practices that international PSFs develop to compete in the Chinese market
  • The relationships between international PSFs and local PSFs in the Chinese market


  • Stephen Denyer, Head of City and International, The Law Society of England and Wales
  • Professor James Faulconbridge (Lancaster University, UK)
  • Professor Crawford Spence (Warwick University, UK)
  • Professor Sarah Hall (University of Nottingham, UK)
  • Dr Sida Liu (University Toronto, Canada)
  • Dr Na Fu (Maynooth University, Ireland)

Event Schedule:

9:00 - 9.20

Registration and Coffee

9:20 – 9:30

Welcome: Professor Daniel Muzio (Newcastle University Business School)

9:30 – 10:20

Stephen Denyer  (The Law Society of England & Wales)
“Perspectives on the globalisation of the market for legal services”

10:20 – 11:10

Crawford Spence (Warwick Business School, UK) & Jingqi Zhu (Newcastle University, UK)
“Money, Honour and Duty: Global Professional Service Firms in China and Japan”


Coffee Break

11:30 – 12:20

Sida Liu (University of Toronto, Canada)
“The Chinese legal profession in the age of globalisation: the rise of the corporate legal sector and its impact on lawyers and society”

12:20 – 1:20


1:20 – 2:10

Na Fu (Trinity Business School, Ireland)
“Relationships in Chinese PSFs: the impact of social capital on organisational ambidexterity”

2:10 – 3:00


James Faulconbridge (Lancaster University, UK)
“It’s a very tricky environment in which to operate”: Field straddling by global law firms in South East Asia


Coffee Break

3:20 – 4:10


Sarah Hall (University of Nottingham, UK)
“Repatialising elites: Chinese migration in London’s international financial district”

4:10 – 4:40

Roundtable Discussion (Chair: Daniel Muzio)
East vs. West: the distinctiveness of professions and professionals in the East