NORSI Excursion to China October 2017

China has one of the world’s largest and fastest growing economies, and China is now one of Norway’s main trading partners. The development of China’s economy has great significance for key sectors of the Norwegian economy, primarily the export of oil and gas and fish. China spends considerable resources on R&D and innovation to restructure their economy from a cheap labor based to become an advanced technology and knowledge-based economy.
Therefore, NORSI is planning a faculty-led study trip to China for NORSI students to provide a hands-on experience on how innovation systems works in China. The program will focus on industry – university relations, areas of R&D and innovation, China’s acquisitions of foreign enterprises (including Norwegian), Norwegian business presence and innovation activity in China, and outlook for Norwegian exports to and investments in China in the future.


This will be a six- day study trip with academic program every day. The program will take place Shanghai and Hangzhou in Zhejiang province in eastern China. Hangzhou is about 1 hour by fast train from Shanghai and just hosted the G20 group conference. The program will draw on NORSI faculty’s contacts. The academic program will take place at Fudan University and Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province. There will be lectures from distinguished scholars, and visits to entrepreneurs and high-tech firms.
The Zhejiang Province is the region in China with the highest percentage of private industry. Thus, the program will also have a strong focus on visiting businesses of various scale, both Chinese and Norwegian that are located in the area.

Final program for download

Photos from the Study Tour

(click on arrows to see all photos)

  • We started our trip in Shanghai. Stayed at Radisson New World. Night view of Shanghai from the hotel.
  • Day time...endless views of buildings and construction.
  • Olga, Tine and Mette enjoying Nanjing road in Shanghai.
  • Welcome dinner. Our first night at the hotel! :=)
  • Nearly all of us outside the Nordic Center at Fudan University: 20 NORSI students, NORSI Management Team and 4 representatives from the Innovation Division at the Norwegian Research Council Norway.
  • Mats Harborn, Chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce, China gave us a fantastic account of how we need to really understand China if we are to understand the world trade and trade with China.
  • At the end of day 2 Fredrik, from nHach - accelerator for Nordic Businesses in China explained how they help Norwegian start-ups to ease in to the Chinese market. (
  • Anne Kjersti Fahlvik at the Research Council exchanging WeChat info with Norwegian - Chineese Thomas Huang, Co-founder of Maygreen BuildTech, who gave us an entrepreneurs view of how to do business in China. (å-tilpasse-seg-kinas-nye-normaltilstand-thomas-huang)
  • We enjoyed some fantastic lunches. Tine and Matt fronting this beautiful table. We ended up with a 20 course lunch and corn and orange juice.
  • On day two we visited a Tencent Incubator - Tencent Maker Spaces. Tencent Maker Spaces relay on Tencent industry background and take advantage of resources from Tencent open platform & other related Tencent departments together with their own experience and advantages to provide comprehensive service for early Internet projects. Here Michell is talking to us about her start-up in e-commerce sales of jewlery. After one year, her company was already seeing income of about 20 million NOK a year!!
  • After a great networking reception at the Norwegian Consulate we were invited to nHack's office at We Work where there was a launch party for Wiral – start-up company from NTNU ( Awesome office view!
  • At nHack - a happy entrepreneur - 2 min after launch of his Wiral product he had collected 24 000 USD! Wiral is a start-up company from NTNU that now is part of nHach and will soon start production of their camera wire in China. (
  • In Shanghai we toured GE Crontonville China where we got a seminar on their innovation management policies and latest products.
  • For the second part of the trip we took the train to Hangzhou and visited Zhejiang university. One of the top 3 universities in China. Olga, Nhien and Matt posing on campus.
  • NORSI Management Team and students on Zhejiang University campus in Hangzhou.
  • A nice Hangzhou style lunch was prepared for us at the Zhejiang university.
  • In Hangzhou our large company visit was at Hikvision were we got a tour and met with the VP. Here are Lene, John-Erik and Erlend waiting for the tour to begin. (
  • At Hikvision we were photographed, scanned and calculated height, age and other characteristics . NORSI Management Director Roger Sørheim is at the center. Hikvision specializes in surveilance cameras and robotics. Fun to play with but the implications are more controversial.
  • We drove buss for hours each day, taking us from hotel, to university campuses and company visities. This photo is from Hangzhou. The traffic is not as bad there as in Shanghai.
  • At Zhejiang University Prof. HUANG, Can gave us a lecture on Transforming China's IP system to stimulate innovation". Here with Bjørn Asheim.
  • On our last half day we visited Hangzhou Future Sci-Tech City (Zhejiang Oversea High Level Talents Innovation Park). Hanzhou is building a new large city for Chinese who returns from over-seas. The buildings here are a small part of the park.
  • At Future Tech City we had a session at one of their 10 new incubators with Jennifer Zhang Jie, CEO Hah and Angel Investment Huadan. She invest mainly in mobil platforms apps.
  • The co-working space dog in DFuture Tech city, the entrepreneurial dog, Simon and Erlend.
  • We said good-by to Hangzhou with a boat ride on West Lake, a UNESCO world heritage place.
  • ast walk on the Bund in Shanghai before flying out


Final Schedule:
14 October: Travel
15 October: Arrival / Meet up at hotel in Shanghai
16 October: Shanghai – Fudan University
17 October: Shanghai – Fudan University and business visits
18 October: Shanghai – Business Visit and travel to Hangzhou
19 October: Hangzhou – Zhejiang University and business visits
20 October: Hangzhou – Zhejiang University and business visits
21 October: Hangzhou – West Lake – Boat excursion and travel back to Shanghai (Departure)
22 October: Shanghai – Departure

Preliminary schedule overview:
The program is now fully booked. 20 NORSI students, the NORSI Managment Team and representatives from the Research Council of Norway are travelling.

Travel Costs

NORSI will cover accommodation (14) 15-21 October, local transportation in China, all meals that are part of the official program, fees and honorariums related to business and university visits.
NORSI students will have to cover their own plane tickets, and local travel in Norway. NORSI will not pay per diem (diett) for the trip but will cover meals that are part of the official program. Thus, there might be some meals out of your own pocket.

NORSI has received extra funding for this study trip from the Research Council of Norway.

Date & Location

Week 42: 14 – 22 October 2017 (including travel dates)
Shanghai and Hangzhou in Zhejiang province in eastern China.

Final Program

Download (PDF, 189KB)