McArthur Hall

McArthur Hall was named in honor of John H. McArthur (MBA 1959, DBA 1963), Dean of Harvard Business School from 1980 to 1995.

The 97,000-square-foot, Georgian-style building with contemporary finishes was designed by the firm of CBT/Childs Bertman Tseckares. Residential life is an integral aspect of the learning experience at HBS, and McArthur Hall’s layout and amenities encourage intellectual and social engagement beyond the classroom. A first-floor reception area, lounge, library, and courtyard accommodate large and small gatherings. The upper floors comprise 160 private bedrooms arranged in eight-person suites with common areas that maximize the opportunity for collaborative discussions. Rooms are equipped with the latest multi-media tools and wireless Internet access. Located on the northeast corner of the HBS campus, McArthur Hall is part of a complex of residential, administrative, and classroom facilities dedicated to Executive Education.

About the Name

McArthur Hall was named in honor of John H. McArthur (MBA 1959, DBA 1963), Dean of Harvard Business School from 1980 to 1995. McArthur’s association with the School began in 1957, when he arrived as a young MBA student from Vancouver with his wife, Natty, a fellow graduate of the University of British Columbia. Remaining at the School after earning his DBA, McArthur rose through the faculty ranks, teaching finance, writing cases, and increasingly taking on administrative roles, particularly during the tenure of his predecessor, Dean Lawrence E. Fouraker. McArthur was 46 when he was appointed Dean in 1980.

As the School’s seventh Dean, McArthur believed HBS could not rely on momentum to ensure its leadership position in the future. He initiated major changes in faculty development, committed unprecedented resources to research and curriculum development, and positioned HBS academic programs at the leading edge of business education. Addressing the problem of the School’s aging physical plant, McArthur oversaw the construction of three new buildings and 16 major renovation projects. In addition, he revitalized HBS publishing activities, widening dissemination of the faculty’s intellectual capital and capturing an important source of income for the School.

Since the end of his tenure as Dean, McArthur has remained at the School as the George Fisher Baker Professor of Business Administration, Emeritus and Dean Emeritus. He has served in multiple advisory roles in business, government, education, and health care. From 1995 to 2005, he was senior advisor to the president of the World Bank. McArthur currently chairs the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada.

Attendees at the April 1999 dedication of McArthur Hall included the former Dean’s friends, colleagues, and family, as well as Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino, who spoke about the close relationship McArthur forged with the city of Boston. Others spoke about McArthur’s distinguished career, and Dean Kim B. Clark, expressing the sentiments of many, noted, “The real measure of John’s impact on HBS is not in the formal record. It is in his spirit, character, and the depth of his personal relationships. That is why we honor him today.”