Scott Edinburgh
October 15, 2020

Harvard Business School Selects New Dean

Last Friday, Harvard Business School announced that Srikant Datar, the Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor of Business Administration, will become the school’s next dean.

Harvard Business School President Larry Bacow commented that Datar is “an innovative educator, a distinguished scholar, and a deeply experienced academic leader” as well as “a warm, generous, and thoughtful colleague and mentor — someone whose leadership experience, intimate knowledge of HBS, deep devotion to the institution, and talent for catalyzing constructive change all promise to serve the School and the University well, at a pivotal moment for business education.”

Upon beginning his service on January 1, 2021, Datar will become Harvard Business School’s 11th dean in the school’s 112-year history.

Datar will succeed the school’s current dean, Nitin Nohria. Though Nohria planned to conclude his deanship this past June, he agreed to extend his position as dean through the end of December to provide stability during the pandemic.

On top of Datar’s faculty role, he has been responsible for faculty recruiting, faculty development, executive education, research, and university affairs. He has served as faculty chair of the Harvard Innovation Lab, led efforts to develop various new joint programs, and was heavily involved in transitioning to remote learning this past spring in response to COVID-19.

Learn more about Datar’s range of leadership positions over his nearly 25 years at Harvard Business School from Poets&Quants.

Though Datar will be assuming the position of dean during trying times, current dean Nohria shared that he is “confident, through the remainder of the pandemic and beyond,” that Datar “will chart an inspired course for the School.”

Provost Alan M. Garber also spoke highly of Datar, emphasizing that he “has been remarkably effective at moving HBS forward.” Garber’s commentary applies not only to Datar’s capabilities as an educator and researcher but also as a leader.

This change in leadership is promising for those looking to apply to Harvard Business School. With Datar’s broad international perspective, strong leadership experience, and commitment to building an increasingly inclusive and diverse community, Harvard Business School has a bright future.

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