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Harvard Business School – No Plans for Asian Campuses

August 27,2010 by: admin

The new dean of Harvard Business School, Nitin Nohria talks to WSJ’s Duncan Mavin regarding 21st century globalization and the West position within the world economy. Nitin Nohria got the top spot after finishing school at the Harvard Business School last July 1. He is the first known dean born outside USA and Canada. As the new dean, he showed public gestures such as traveling around the world and making stops in some Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Mumbai and Shanghai. He has pioneered the idea of coming up with “Global Century” in the line of business and as US’ economic dominance. This is indeed challenged by an Asian. 

During an interview in Hong Kong, Mr. Nohria disregarded the idea about putting up a top U.S. business School campus overseas. He thinks that the idea is not feasible and necessary and that they have no ambition to achieve such plan. Another thing is that they are in the industry not to chase demand but knowledge. He also said that Harvard prefers a strategy which is to maintain “a small physical footprint” in the continent of Asia by means of executive-education programs and research centers and these would provide a “very large , intellectual footprint” for U.S. school. 

Asia’s demand for business education has outstripped all other combined regions, based on the Graduate Management Admission Council, which is responsible for standard entrance exam administration as used by global business schools. In 2009, the number of Graduate Management Admission Tests or GMAT was 34,449 in Asia while North America has 21,376. The proportion of the GMAT scores achieved by Asian applicants to U.S. business program dropped from 77% in 2005 to 67% in 2009. In the same period, a rise in GMAT for regional programs was seen in the countries Singapore, China and Hong Kong.

The flow in demand has been shown among students from India and China. From 2005 to 2009, GMAT examinees from India and China increased by 100% as reported by the council. Because of this demand, Duke University has shown interest in putting up a business school in India. Thus, other U.S. Universities are also said to be interested in targeting both Indian and Chinese markets.

Since 1988, Mr. Nohria has been a Harvard Faculty. He has made significant steps these past few years to be in line better with the global economy.  Twenty years ago, Harvard taught just a few case studies focused on Asian examples, however, as of this time, there are 70 Indian and 100 Chinese Cases. Mr. Nohria added that almost 40% of the students from Harvard Business School belong outside the U.S. territory, thus, there are no chances to increase such proportion. He stated that, in any case the mix would rise up to 50% or 60%; the school must remain in meritocracy.


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