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Indian-American Srikant Datar named Harvard Business School dean

Srikant Datar, the Indian-American Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor of Business Administration and the senior associate dean for University affairs at the Harvard Business School (HBS), has been named as the new dean of the School, President Larry Bacow has announced.

Indian-American Srikant Datar named Harvard Business School dean
Srikant Datar


Datar will begin his service on January 1, 2021.

"Srikant Datar is an innovative educator, a distinguished scholar, and a deeply experienced academic leader," The Harvard Gazette quoted Bacow as saying in the announcement on Friday.

"He is a leading thinker about the future of business education, and he has recently played an essential role in HBS's creative response to the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. He has served with distinction in a range of leadership positions over his nearly 25 years at HBS, while also forging novel collaborations with other Harvard Schools.

"Srikant will come to the deanship with a broad international perspective, decades of close engagement with business practice, and a strong commitment to building an increasingly diverse and inclusive HBS community," Bacow added.

Since joining the HBS faculty in 1996, Datar has held a series of key positions, as the School's senior associate dean responsible for faculty recruiting, for faculty development, for executive education, for research, and currently for University affairs.

Since 2015, he has served since 2015 as faculty chair of the Harvard Innovation Labs, or i-lab.

Reacting to the announcement, the Indian-American said: "I am equal measures humbled and honoured to take on this role. Harvard Business School is an institution with a remarkable legacy of impact in research, education, and practice.

"I look forward to working with colleagues and friends of the School � including throughout Harvard, in our Boston community, and around the world � to realize our mission in what undoubtedly will be an exciting new era."

Datar will become the 11th dean in the Business School's 112-year history.

He will succeed Nitin Nohria, who last November announced his plans to conclude his deanship at the end of June 2020, after 10 years, but agreed to continue through this December in view of the pandemic.

Datar graduated with distinction in mathematics and economics from St. Xavier's College, University of Mumbai in 1973.

A chartered accountant, he went on to receive a post-graduate diploma in business management from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, before completing master's degrees in statistics and economics and a Ph.D. in business, all from Stanford University.

From 1984 to 1989, he was an assistant professor and then associate professor at the Carnegie Mellon Graduate School of Industrial Administration, where he was honoured with the George Leland Bach Teaching Award.

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