A professor who has been active for more than two decades in promoting business ethics has been named dean of Harvard Business School.

050310_Nohria_Nitin_022.jpgNitin Nohria, a member of the Harvard faculty since 1988, succeeds Jay Light, who will retire at the end of this academic year.

Nohria has been a faculty leader of the movement to adopt an MBA Oath, a voluntary pledge for graduating and current MBAs to “create value responsibly and ethically.”  The Oath now involves a coalition of MBA students, graduates and advisors, representing over 250 schools from around the world, and partnerships with the Aspen Institute and the World Economic Forum.

“Society’s trust in business has certainly been shaken” Nohria said following the announcement of his appointment.  “My hope at Harvard Business School is to restore that trust in business and business education.”

Of the recent raft of business scandals, Nohria added: “There’s something about the way that we began to run business that made the pursuit of short-term profit maximization more important than creating long-term sustainable businesses.”

Nohria has co-written or co-edited 16 books, and is author of more than 50 articles and dozens of teaching cases and notes.  He is past head of Harvard Business School’s required first-year “Leadership and Organizational Behavior” course, and he co-directed a team that designed a required first-year course on “Leadership and Corporate Accountability.”

An Indian-born American citizen, Nohria is expected to also bring more global perspective to the Harvard program.  He recently taught in such executive education programs as “Building a Global Enterprise in India” and the “New CEO Workshop.” Earlier this year, he was one of four instructors from Harvard Schools who co-designed and taught a January term workshop on “Faith and Leadership in a Fragmented World.”

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