Professor Huaichuan Rui

Personal profile

Huaichuan Rui received her Ph.D from Judge Business School, University of Cambridge and is currently Professor of International Business at the School of Business and Management, Royal Holloway, University of London. She was a research team member of the Programme of Energy and Sustainable Development, Stanford University.


Huaichuan is a pioneering researcher on Chinese multinational enterprises. She has been leading the project of "China’s Outward Investment and Multinational Enterprises" (2005-present) for more than a decade, conducting extensive fieldworks and interviews around the world including Africa, America, Asia, Australia and Europe. She has interviewed over 800 of government officials (of China and host countries), managers and employees (of multinational, Chinese and local firms), local residents in host countries, and key figures in international organizations. The indsutries she has researched comprehensively include coal, oil, steel, power equipment, automobile, telecommunicaiton, construction, and high-speed trains. The in-depth empirical research has enabled her to develop new theories and transform conventional thinking on developing country firms’ strategy, capability, and social and economic impact. 


Focusing on Chinese and developing coutnry firms' strategy, capability and impact, Huaichuan has explored multiple themes including these firms' catch-up, learning by doing, imitation and innovation, knowledge management, entrepreneurship, internationalization, development impact, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and government relationship. Her research receives wide recognition. As a result of the strong reputation earned by her innovative research on developing country firms, China and Africa, Huaichuan has been invited to many organizations including the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), European Commisson and OECD to present her study on Chinese multinationals, trade and investment around the world.


In 2015, Huaichuan received a substantial grant from European Research Council (ERC) and a small grant from British Academy on a research project “Trust, Global Traders, and Commodities in a Chinese International city” (2015-2020). Led by professor Magnus Marsden of the University of Sussex, the project focuses on Yiwu, a small and poor city by the 1970s but the major international hub for the wholesale of small commodities today. Through fiedlworks and interviews in China, US, UK, Hungary, UAE, India and Indonesia, Huaichuan examines how policies and entrepreneurship enable Yiwu’s success and contribution to the world, especially the poor.  



Research interests

1. China's trade, investment, multinational firms, and development;

2. International business and strategy; multinaitonal enterprises;

3. The interaction of international business and world development;

4. Industries including energy (oil/gas, coal, coal liquefaction, renewable energy, electric power), construction, machinery (automobile, machine tools, power equipment), telecommunications, high speed rail and commercial aircraft.


“International Business (BSc, MBA)”, “Strategic Management (BSc)”, “Asia Pacific Business (BSc)”, "Management of Asian Multinationals (MSc)", “Cooperative Strategy (MSc, Distance Learning MBA)”, and "China and Internal Economy (MSc, Distance Learning MBA)”.

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