02 Jul 2008
Harvard University Opens Office In Shanghai
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Harvard Business School
Dean Jay Light
Photo: Webb Chappell

BOSTON — Harvard Business School (HBS) Dean Jay O. Light and William C. Kirby, T. M. Chang Professor of China Studies and Spangler Family Professor of Business Administration at Harvard and Chairman of the Harvard China Fund, announced yesterday the opening of a Harvard office in Shanghai. The office will serve both HBS and the Harvard China Fund under the auspices of the Office of the Harvard University Provost. The University plans to open another office in Beijing this autumn. Both locations will enable Harvard University to explore a range of potential activities in support of its research and teaching programs. Light and Kirby made the announcement in Shanghai.

Harvard's new China offices will have a number of key responsibilities, including:

  • Providing local coordination and assistance to Harvard's various faculties and schools and assisting individual faculty and students engaged in research, teaching, or other academic activities in greater China;
  • Offering Harvard students on-the-ground services for regional study and internship programs;
  • Facilitating admissions interviews and programmatic events for prospective students;
  • Coordinating and promoting further collaboration between Harvard and Chinese universities and other organizations;
  • Building deeper connections to a growing Harvard alumni population in the region.

William C. Kirby,
T. M. Chang Professor
of China Studies and
Spangler Family Professor
of Business Administration
at Harvard and Chairman
of the Harvard China Fund

For Harvard Business School, the Shanghai office will also house a researcher affiliated with the School's Hong Kong-based Asia Pacific Research Center. Operated under the direction of the HBS Global Initiative, the other Business School international research centers are located in Latin America, Japan, India, and Europe. Each center has an executive director who leads a team of case writers, all of whom are fluent in the language of the host country and familiar with its customs, companies, universities, and governments.

"We are very pleased to be opening this new facility in greater China," said Dean Light while visiting with HBS alumni in Shanghai as part of the School's worldwide Centennial celebration. "Harvard Business School has had a longstanding interest in and commitment to the region. Today, increasing numbers of HBS faculty list China among their top areas of geographical interest. The addition of this new office will add significantly to our research and our understanding of the world's fastest-growing economy. We look forward to working with and learning from Chinese businesspeople, government officials, and many others in the years ahead."

"With this visit to China, we are proud to follow in the footsteps of Harvard University President Drew Gilpin Faust, who recently received an honorary degree from Peking University, and of more than 600 Harvard University alumni and friends who came to China in March to participate in the largest gathering of Harvard graduates ever held outside the United States," noted Professor Kirby. "Through the resources of the Harvard China Fund, Harvard University will continue to investigate and increase its options in greater China. Generations of Harvard College students and Harvard graduate students will benefit greatly from these opportunities now and in the future, and these initial steps towards establishing a more comprehensive set of facilities in the region will further the University's research and teaching missions."

With its rich heritage of global leadership in management education and research, Harvard Business School is deeply rooted in the international economy. Working closely with companies, universities, and governments, HBS aims to help shape the perspective, knowledge, and insights of managers around the globe.

Among existing programs and projects in China, HBS, in conjunction with Tsinghua University's School of Economics and Management and the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS), runs the Senior Executive Program for China, which addresses the business and management demands faced by Chinese executives.

The Global CEO Program for China was created by HBS, CEIBS, and IESE Business School to prepare Chinese chief executives to build world-class enterprises in the global economy.

In addition, for a number of years HBS faculty members have helped academics from China and other countries learn to develop, write, and teach case studies - a method of teaching management and leadership pioneered by the School soon after its founding in 1908.

About Harvard Business School

Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 200 offers full-time​ programs leading to the MBA and doctoral degrees, as well as more than 80 open enrollment Executive Education programs and more than 60 custom programs. For more than a century, HBS faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching to educate leaders who have shaped the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.​​​​