The International Immersion provided an in-depth understanding of the business environments of Vietnam and Singapore. Students learned about the economic indicators and the impact of governments and businesses on the region. Through exchanges with industry experts and executives, they gained insights into identifying business opportunities and risks in the Southeast Asian market. Getting first-hand, in-depth knowledge from business leaders and successful players, the students were able to develop competencies to evaluate business opportunities while mitigating economic, business, and political risks. This, combined with cultural immersion, allowed the students to get a deeper understanding of the characteristics of Southeast Asia, which will undoubtedly prove invaluable in future business endeavors.
The International Immersion kickstarted in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, with a get-together and a welcome dinner, followed by expert talks about different business topics. The Austrian Trade Commissioner talked about Vietnam and its position on the Global Strategy Map, and Prof. Nguyen Xuan Thanh, lecturer at Fulbright University, gave insights into Public Policies and Management in Vietnam. Also, practitioners from various businesses shed light on the Vietnamese market with all its opportunities, obstructions and potential traps.
The first theoretical impressions of how business is done in Vietnam was complemented by academic lectures at RMIT Vietnam University, and rounded off with visits to different companies, operating in different branches. Mekong Capital explained what vision-driven investment is. The Phu My Hung Development Corporation showed what smart city development means and how it is implemented in master planning, construction and operation for a whole part of the city. The Austrian producer of crystal and glass-based products, Swarovski, gave insights into their manufacturing in Vietnam, and at the FPT Software Campus, the students dove into the world of software development and digital services of a global IT service provider.
The students continued their journey through Southeast Asia in Singapore, being welcomed by the Austrian Ambassador Peter Guschelbauer. More company visits, e.g. at Luxasia, and expert talks about topics like the energy crisis, private equite in emering Asia and real estate in Singapore gave further insights into the business world of the region. Finally, an academic session at Singapore University of Technology & Design (SUTD) took a look into the future of robotics. The focus of the International Immersion also shifted away from the strict business perspective: the full cultural immersion was achieved by visiting Southeast Asia's largest art fair, the ART SG Vernissage, a Marina Bay tour and a visit to the biophilic skyscraper CapitaSpring and its rooftop gardens.