An Interview with Hong Ma
Managing Director of APAC
Edelman Global Advisory recently caught up with EGA Managing Director of APAC, Hong Ma, on her professional experience, advice she'd give her younger self, and her hobbies outside of work. See our interview below and keep up with Hong on LinkedIn.
EGA: What excites you most about your role at EGA?
HM: The most exciting aspect of working at EGA is learning from and together with teams around the world on issues that impact our political systems, economics, and societies. Being curious and caring about the word’s development is part of my job, and it feels fantastic.
EGA: What would you say is your personal area of expertise?
HM: Healthcare policy has been my professional passion since I first embarked on my career, and it remains an area that I continue to enthusiastically develop my expertise in. I am fascinated by the role smart policies can have in enabling scientific breakthroughs that save lives and improve quality of living. However, there is never a straightforward approach. Rather, the ever-shifting puzzles require forward-looking vision, adaptive leadership, and stakeholders’ co-creation.
EGA: If you could give yourself one piece of advice at the start of your career, what would it be?
I would probably want to impart more than one piece of advice to myself, but the key one might be to not rush into a post for the sake of having a job, instead, focus on exploring opportunities and options that enable the full realization of potential.
EGA: What past work project or accomplishment are you the proudest of and why?
HM: I’m proud that I have quickly built a reliable network with colleagues across markets under the guidance and support from Ian McCabe. These relations enabled me to draw the best possible resources for our clients spanning a wide range of projects.
EGA: What would you do if you weren’t doing this?
HM: Maybe getting involved in more international organizational work across different countries in the field of health policy, undertaking more volunteer positions in animal shelters, and spending more time reading.
EGA: If you could invite 3 people (living or dead) to a dinner party, who would you choose and why?
HM: I assume it’s 3 people in addition to EGA colleagues? In that case, Daniel Kahneman for his critical insights on the human mind, Richard Feynman for his penetrating knowledge and simple explanations on the universe and Yuzuru Hanyu for his inspirational achievements in figure skating.
EGA: How do you like to spend your time outside of work? Do you have any special hobbies or interests?
HM: I tend to sign up to a lot of courses, ranging from dog behavior, cognitive therapies, and statistics, to chess, sailing and wake surfing. I am not good at all of them, but the process of learning something new is invigorating and rewarding. I am also undertaking a doctorate in public health – to become more qualified in an area I have a long-term interest in.
About Hong Ma
Hong Ma is based in Hong Kong and specializes in public health policy and stakeholder engagement. Before joining Edelman, she had a decade of experience leading healthcare research and advocacy projects for healthcare organizations and companies in mainland China.
Ms. Ma's work with healthcare companies in the Asia Pacific region includes experience building stakeholder engagement strategies and platforms with leading academic institutions and think tanks to advance innovation eco-systems, promote value-based progressive reimbursement and people-centric healthcare practice. In these roles, Ms. Ma facilitating discussions for industry associations and their executive member companies to establish industry-wide advocacy positions and platforms. She has also directed policy white papers on behalf of clients to key policy makers. Additionally, Ms. Ma has experience representing patient groups focusing on non-communicable diseases and engaging rare diseases communities.
A key member of the Edelman Global Advisory Asia Pacific leadership team, Ms. Ma works closely with Edelman healthcare leaders across the globe, providing strategic counsel focusing on disease awareness campaigns and corporate public health positioning. As a researcher and author in these areas, she published, together with scholars from Peking Union Medical School, in the leading healthcare journal, The Lancet, on the issue of China’s oncology reimbursement implementation program.
Ms. Ma graduated from Peking University with double BAs and holds a MSc from the London School of Economics (LSE). She has also earned academic qualifications in Biostatistics, Data Management, International Relations, and Global Health. Ms. Ma is currently pursuing a Doctorate degree in Public Health at the University of Illinois.