Research and Course Development Services

Harvard Business School (HBS) provides unparalleled faculty support to facilitate the creation of enduring knowledge that shapes both business practice and pedagogy. HBS is distinct in that it funds almost all its own faculty and doctoral research, freeing scholars from the distraction of fundraising and the constraints of third-party grants or sponsorship. HBS also provides a wide array of services to support faculty in the development of a large number of breakthrough business ideas, innovative course materials used around the world, and research on critical business problems. Some specific research services available to HBS faculty include:

Computing resources

HBS provides an expansive computing infrastructure for research, as well as the guidance and expertise of programmers, statisticians, database managers, and technical support. A high-performance computing grid and MySQL server, including secure storage and back-up for large datasets, is freely available to HBS faculty. The Research Computing Services team offers training and troubleshooting for these server resources and research software. One-on-one technology consulting, training, as well as benchmarking are available for emerging technology and the latest productivity hardware. Open 24/7, the Faculty Research Computing Center holds a broad range of high-end machines and a full array of research software.

Cultural expertise

Our regional research centers in Latin America, Asia-Pacific, Japan, India, Europe, Shanghai, Istanbul, and California enable faculty to work with leaders of industry, government, and academia worldwide, and study business challenges and innovations wherever they occur. Through sustained work in the field, faculty can immerse themselves in the culture and values, as well as the intricacies and nuances that lead to truly meaningful and insightful research. The on-campus Case Research and Writing Group provides foreign language support and business practices. The Directors of Research also offer an annual faculty “immersion” to provide opportunities for faculty who have spent little or no time in emerging countries to learn firsthand about their development through visits to business and governmental organizations.

Curriculum, literature and archival services

HBS’s Baker Library is one of the world’s largest and most respected business libraries. Baker Research Services provides a full range of library support for faculty research, course development, and information management. Services include fact checking, literature reviews, data source consultation and purchasing as well as data manipulation and analysis. HBS also hosts the world’s preeminent collection of unique Historical Collections related to the development of American and international business and industry and with expert reference support.

Dissemination of research

As an institution committed to impacting practice, HBS helps its faculty members disseminate their research via its impressive network of alumni, collaborators, and practitioners. The HBS Working Knowledge group is available to work directly with faculty to summarize and promote new research on its site which has about 3.65 million annual visitors and over 170,000 subscribers to its weekly newsletter. The Faculty & Research web site allows public access to many publications of the faculty, including working papers and academic research articles. HBS has a full-time Research Events Coordinator who works directly with faculty to ensure the seamless execution of around 20 research events annually. In addition, the Marketing and Communications group is available for faculty consultations to promote specific research or to answer more general branding questions.

Editorial and permissions expertise

We offer a full complement of publication-related services including editing, assistance with copyright permissions, document processing, and the submission of course materials to Harvard Business Publishing. The Case Services Center provides advice on copyright issues associated with the development of the faculty’s research, and works with faculty and their research partners to formalize agreements that ensure the confidentiality of information entrusted to our faculty during the course of their research.

Experimental/survey services

We provide personalized guidance in all phases of experimental and survey research projects, including planning, data collection, analysis, and reporting. A PhD level survey methodologist and experimental researcher are available to provide advice on survey and research design. Research Computing Services has a team that manages the on-campus computer lab and small group rooms used for experimental research, as well as provides recruiting support and processes payment of participants. The team also supports new and emerging experiment-related technologies such as eye-tracking and sociometry equipment.

Hiring and management

The Division of Research and Faculty Development manages the hiring process for full-time or part-time Research Associates and contractors, as well as temporary workers who work directly for faculty. We maintain a broad network of potential candidates ranging from PhD level researchers in specific fields to current and recent undergraduates. Research Staff Services provides personalized attention to faculty in assessing their research, recruiting and hiring needs, and in assisting with managing their staff. In addition, it offers a broad range of services to Research Associates, from their arrival to departure, including orientation, training sessions, and guidance.

Instructional technologies

HBS's Educational Technology Group (ETG) partners with faculty to build products that enhance content, enliven teaching, and amplify learning for in-class, preparatory, and follow-up exercises. This team of instructional designers, content and media developers, graphic artists, and technologists help faculty, researchers, and program heads design and build a wide variety of technology-based tools. HBS faculty members have access to dedicated funding and development resources to create customized teaching tools that meet their specific goals. Curriculum Services works closely with faculty to ensure their students will have resources such as workshops, web pages, reference tools, and research guides.

Statistical and data consulting

PhD level statisticians are available to faculty for methodological consultation, statistical programming, and analysis. Database programmers are available for administration, data cleaning, data retrieval, parsing, and data transfer optimization and matching through Research Computing Services and Baker Research Services, or can be hired as dedicated Research Associates. HBS has staff dedicated to creating customized databases and collecting/purchasing data from various sources such as “scraping” public information off websites.

Writers and researchers

HBS provides a pool of experienced and centrally managed case writers and researchers who work for faculty on a project basis. The Case Research and Writing Group​ specializes in field cases and complex assignments. The regional research centers provide experienced writers and researchers around the globe. In addition, faculty can hire and manage dedicated Research Associates or contractors to assist with their research.