The chairman of sourcing giant Li & Fung, Victor Fung, has set up a Hong Kong-based think-tank to provide Asian perspectives on global issues.

The Fung Global Institute, which was established yesterday (25 August) will be an independent non-profit organisation which will receive funding from the Fung family foundation.

"Today's challenges call for a broader, more inclusive analytical framework," explained Fung. "The world is changing in unprecedented ways at multiple speeds, and as Asia becomes more prominent in these transformations, it is essential to engage Asia and to provide Asian perspectives into the global dialogue towards a more constructive future."

Initially, the institute's research will be structured around four themes associated with global sustainability and growth:

  • Global Supply Chains: trade and jobs in the new economic landscape;
  • Global Governance: Asia finance 2020;
  • China's New Growth Model: implementation and impacts of the 12th five-year plan; and
  • Global Growth and Sustainability: new lifestyle and growth models.

Professor Michael Spence, a Nobel Laureate in economics, will head the institute's academic board.

"The Institute aims to do research that has direct relevance to business decisions, business strategy and policy makers, and to the intersection where they complement each other," he said.

"It is very important in fulfilling the mission of the Institute to locate the innovative thinking in Asia, disseminate it effectively and share it with the rest of the participants in the global economy."

It has partnered with a number of international research and learning institutes, including the University of Hong Kong, Harvard University's Asia Centre in the US; IMD business school Switzerland; and the MIT Sloan School of Management in the US. It is also in discussions with the London School of Economics and Political Science and other potential partners

The Fung Global Institute will also hold an annual forum, business briefings and seminars to promote knowledge exchange and communication across stakeholder groups.