Professor Ian Baxter

UK Director

Ian Baxter originally trained as an archaeologist at Edinburgh University, and completed a PhD at the University of Cambridge investigating strategic management within heritage and conservation organisations. He has worked for a number of Universities, including the University of Cambridge as Director of Public & Professional Programmes, Bournemouth University, Glasgow Caledonian University, and the University of Suffolk where he was Head of Suffolk Business School from 2012-2015 and continuing part-time as a Professor of Historic Environment Management. At Heriot-Watt University he is the Director of the Scottish Confucius Institute for Business & Communication, and splits his time between Edinburgh and Cambridge.  He teaches on Heriot-Watt’s MSc Tourism & Heritage Management, as a member of the School of Social Sciences, and is closely involved in the development of the University’s international strategy in relation to China.

He is a Board Director of The Heritage Alliance and the Built Environment Forum Scotland – the national representative bodies for heritage NGOs in England and Scotland. He is also a member of a number of professional committees, including the Institute for Historic Building Conservation’s Education, Training & Standards Committee, and has previously served on the National Trust for Scotland’s Economic & Community Development Advisory Panel and English Heritage’s Research Advisory Panel.

Day-to-day he leads on the business engagement activities for the Confucius Institute, and is overseeing the development of a specific activity stream with businesses and organisations working in the tourism and heritage sector in Scotland and wider UK. 


Heriot-Watt University profile: 

Professor Ping ZHANG

Chinese Co-Director of SCIBC

Position at TUFE: Doctoral Advisor, Professor (Public Finance), School of Public Finance and Administration, Tianjin University of Finance &Economics

Research interests

Public Financial Administration of Local Governments, Public Debt, Private and Public Partnership


Ping Zhang is Professor and Doctoral Advisor of Public Finance at Tianjin University of Finance and Economics and Co-director of Scottish Confucius Institute for Business and Communication at Heriot-Watt University. Her research focuses on public financial administration of local governments, especially risk management of public debt. She has been awarded two research projects supported by National Social Science Foundation of China which is the top official fund in China. She used to be a visiting scholar at Stanford University, USA. She is the author of Empirical Assessment and Governance Path on the Debt Risk of Investment and Financing Platforms of Chinese Subnational Governments (Tianjin People Press), Comparative Analysis of Chinese and Western Public Financial Actuality and Mechanism (Tianjin People Press). She is elected as High-level Innovative Talents by Tianjin Government. She has published more than 45 academic papers, and many of her work are cited by China Social Science Citation Index. She has been invited as a lecture presenter by many well-known international conferences, such as 32ND Annual Congress of the European Economic Association (Lisbon, Portugal, 2017), the G200 Youth Forum (Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, 2016), Asian Conference of Finance and Economics (Singapore, 2015).

Dr Isabel Hui Liu

Deputy Director
Scottish Confucius Institute for Business and Communication

Isabel Hui Liu received her MSc from Beijing Foreign Studies University in Simultaneous Conference Interpreting. She was awarded a PhD scholarship to study at Heriot-Watt University in Interpreting studies. She was appointed as the First Minister’s official interpreter and his Chinese advisor in 2007. She has accompanied the First Minister for his four official visits to China. As the Scottish Government interpreter, she has covered a wide range of ministerial level dialogues between China and Scotland including Chinese Prime Minister and vice Prime Minister’s official visits. She widely involved in work that promotes the relationship between China and Scotland and the Scotland’s China strategy for China.

Upon her PhD graduation, she started working as the International Policy officer at Universities Scotland to promote the internationalization of the Scottish universities as a whole. In 2011, she returned to Heriot-Watt University to lecture in Conference Interpreting, to develop new Chinese related courses and build international partnerships. She started to work on the Confucius Institute application for Heriot-Watt University in 2012 and was appointed as the deputy Director of Confucius Institute when the application was approved by Hanban in Nov 2013.

Isabel leads on operational planning and delivery of language training by the Institute.

Ms Ruth Moir

Assistant Principal International Development

Ruth Moir is responsible for international strategy at Heriot-Watt University and manages international development, as a member of the Principal’s Office.  The university has a strong profile internationally with two international campuses and extensive collaborative partnerships globally.  Ruth worked for Heriot-Watt University in Dubai as Deputy Head and then as Head of Campus from 2006-2008 and was Programme Manager for the establishment of Heriot-Watt University Malaysia in 2014.  She currently serves as a Board Director of Heriot-Watt University Malaysia and was a Board Director of Edinburgh Business School from 2011-2017. She is a Warwick University graduate and has an MA in Education Management and Leadership from the Open University.  

Fiona Dalziel

Institute Administrator

Fiona joined the team as Institute Administrator in March 2018.  She is responsible for the smooth running of our office and is the person that you should go to if you have any questions. As well as the normal administration duties, Fiona also assists with the various events that we hold throughout the year: this ranges from the initial setting up stages to being present on the day and ensuring that things go without a hitch, to marketing all our courses on our website, and overseeing our social media presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Fiona came to us after spending twelve years at a publishing company based in West Lothian, and brings with her a wealth of knowledge.