An Interesting Apology . . .

Did you catch Monday’s apology from the dean of Harvard Business School, for the school’s sometimes offensive treatment of its women professors and students?   Apparently Harvard has been prompted to improve its ways in part due to an unflattering profile in the New York Times last year, recounting the gender inequality struggles that women have had at HBS.

As part of its efforts to change, the dean committed to doubling the number of Harvard case studies that feature women business leaders.  Sadly, the starting point is only 9%, so Harvard’s case studies will still have fewer than 20% featuring women.  The Fortune article notes that Harvard previously committed to making its case studies (which are used in the vast majority of MBA programs around the world) more global, and within a decade expanded its international case studies ten-fold, from 5% to a whopping 57%.

Besides the effort to “dramatically” increase the number of women leaders in case studies, the dean also pledged to assist its women alums in becoming board directors, and to improve mentoring, both worthy objectives.  Considering Harvard’s role in educating future business leaders around the world, I hope they quickly blow past this new goal of 18% goal of female protagonists in their case studies.

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