Ford Motor Company in China: How Will it Respond to Increasing Demand for Electric Vehicles

Total Prizes Awarded of $11,000 (sponsored by Ford China and the University of Dayton):

  • Grand Prize—$4,000
  • Second Place—$3,000
  • Third Place—$2,000
  • Fourth/Fifth Place—$1,000 each


In the spring 2015 semester, University of Dayton students tackled a real problem faced by Ford Motor Co., China - how to respond to the increasing demand for electrification in the auto industry in the next 5 to 10 years.
  • Student teams read background materials provided by UD and conducted additional research on this important issue.
  • The case was introduced by the CEO of Ford China to all teams (either in person at UD or via teleconference).
  • Teams worked on their analysis throughout the spring 2015 term and presented their results to a panel of judges in early April for the first round of the project. The 5 teams judged to have the best analysis & presentation entered the final round and two weeks later presented before the judges again, this time joined by Ford personnel.

The Project

Student teams addressed the following question: How should senior leadership at Ford China respond to the growing demand for electrification in the auto industry in China in the next five to ten years?
  • Students utilized the SBA-China Institute 2015 Consulting Project e-booklet. The e-booklet provided background information on the global automotive industry as well as the challenges and opportunities surrounding electrification of the industry in China. Some background information about Ford Motor Company was also provided. Finally, some tips on rethinking of how PowerPoint should be used was provided.
  • Shanghai-based teams attended a briefing by John Lawler, CEO of Ford China, who presented the problem to the students.
  • Dayton-based teams were able to watch a video of John Lawler presenting the case at a Dayton-based kick-off event.
  • Teams crafted and presented a 15 minute PowerPoint presentation that answered the project question.
  • Each team also presented an executive summary of their recommendations.

What Were the Evaluation Criteria?

  • Level of innovation/creativity/originality in the solution(s).
  • Critical thinking and analysis.
  • Quality of the presentation (slides and oral presentation).
  • Coverage of relevant issues/opportunities and thoroughness of analysis.
  • Ford China’s spending limit on any solution is $250 million USD. Solutions may come from within Ford’s portfolio or involve outside parties (through licensing, acquisition, or joint venture), but must specifically identify financial drivers to success including projected volumes and break-even targets.
  • Presentations that are composed largely of research results (“what research told us”) are not sufficient to win. Presentations must go further and advise Ford China on concrete and measurable steps the company should take to meet the challenge.

The Winners

First Place ($4,000): Ford EVeryone (Team Innovation)




Team Members: Alison Christy, Elizabeth Fitzgerald, India Huger, Melissa Karasack and Hailey Thorn

Second Place ($3,000): Charging FOrwaRD

Charging FOrwaRD

Team Members: Katherine Baglieri, Yvette Cabrera, Le Luo and Wei Hu

Third Place ($2,000): Affordable Talent


Team Members: Paula Arcaro, Libby Durnwald, Dominic Falsetti, Ryan Lopus and Kayla Waitrovich

Fourth & Fifth Place (TIE) ($1,000 per team): Flyers for Ford & Shift 4

Flyers for Ford


Teams MembersJoseph DeMartis, Benjamin Durst, Hannah Ford and Cameron Zuck

Shift 4

Shift 4

Team Members: Patrick Gilkey, Teng Zheng, Megan Stuffelbeam and Lauren Colasanti

Other Related Links

Contact Us

University of Dayton China Institute

300 College Park 
Dayton, Ohio 45469 - 1323