Thoughts From HBS’ New Dean Nohria

July 1st was Nitin Nohria‘s first day as dean of Harvard Business School, and he marked the occasion with a video message on the school’s website expressing his sense of responsibility for continuing the school’s legacy of groundbreaking ideas and transformational educational experiences.

“I recognize that we stand at a unique moment in time,” Nohria writes, “and I am energized by the challenges that lie ahead. With business education at an inflection point, we must strive to equip future leaders with the competence and character to address emerging global business and social challenges.”

HBS has always been at the cutting edge of the practice of business, and Nohria says that as the epicenter of business has become more widely distributed, there’s an appetite in the world for the school to show what the future of management education should look like.

The link above will take you to the video message from the dean, but here are edited excerpts from the key areas Nohria addresses.


Harvard Business School has to become more global, because we have to be the place that people can come to and feel that they’re getting the world’s best thinking, that they’re learning about the world’s most cutting-edge companies. And as those companies and that thinking is becoming more global, Harvard Business School inevitably has to become more global than it is today.

Preparing students to lead

A brand-new set of challenges faces future MBAs, which means that HBS must prepare students to lead in this world, contribute to this world, and create the prosperity that the community expects business leaders to provide.


If you think about who owns this school, really its the alumni, because they’re the ones who carry the label ‘I’m a Harvard Business School MBA’. They really are the ambassadors for what this school stands for. We have no other way of knowing whether we make a difference were it not for the successes and accomplishments of our alumni.

Research with impact

The intellectual life that we have at HBS is one of the joys and treasures of the school. It’s very much at the center of what a great university needs to be about: producing great ideas that actually have an impact on the world. Harvard Business School needs to be a leader in the research arena as much as it needs to be a leader in the classroom.

Looking forward

We should never rest on our laurels. The challenges that leaders in the world today face have become more complex, and the school needs to continue to prepare them for those challenges.

For more media coverage on Nitin Nohria, click here.

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