Offering Education to the Senior Care Industry in the Middle Kingdom: Developing an Entry Strategy for Social- og Sundhedsskolen Silkeborg, in China

Jakob Bolding

Student thesis: Master thesis


This paper was done after a long, six month research period and as such presents the final chapter in the authors Cand. Merc. Int. studies from Copenhagen Business School. The focus of the paper is on developing a successful entry strategy for a Danish vocational school seeking to engage in the Chinese market for education of eldercare personnel. By doing so, it contributes to expand the existing literature on internationalisation of service firm organisations. As it will be introduced throughout the course of this paper, China is currently undergoing rapid demographic changes, where life expectancy is rising and the average age of the Chinese citizens are increasing. Such a situation means that the traditional Confucian inspired model for care of the elderly has come under pressure, as more and more families realise that they cannot care for the elderly at home like it was the case earlier. As a direct consequence, the Chinese government is looking to improve the current eldercare solutions available in China, and this does present business opportunities amongst others, within the market for the education of staff to take care of the elderly, as the majority of Chinese eldercare personnel currently does not have any formal training or education. This paper will take the form of a single case study to investigate the instance of the Danish institution, Social- og Sundhedsskolen Silkeborg (SOSU Silkeborg), and its efforts to enter the Chinese market for education of eldercare workers. The central starting point is the current literature which exists on internationalisation of service organisations, as this will be used to formulate an analytical framework based on the questions of why/where, when and how an organisation should enter a foreign market. Several propositions are formulated in order to investigate how internal factors, external factors and the nature of transactions in the market, all have an effect on the organisation. The analysis will be based upon interviews with key people with knowledge related to the organisation, the Chinese market and provision of education within a foreign market. On the basis of the findings in the analysis, a number of recommendations are discussed in order to find out exactly what entry strategy SOSU Silkeborg should pursue in order to be successful within the Chinese market for education of eldercare workers. Keywords: Vocational education, eldercare, China, Denmark, emerging markets, institutions, knowledge intensive services, public sector organisation, joint venture, market position, case study, interviews.

EducationsMSc in Business, Language and Culture, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2014
Number of pages136