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September 2002 Director's Welcome

 
 

John G. Ruggie, CBG Director3 September 2002

Dear CBG Faculty, Staff, Fellows, and Friends,

Twenty years ago, Derek Bok, John Dunlop, and Win Knowlton founded the Center for Business and Government, recognizing the need to build a strong bridge between the Harvard Business School and the Kennedy School and identifying the greater social, political, and economic demands for better, more equitable, and more efficient cross-sector relationships.  When Ira Jackson became Director of CBG after a successful career in the private sector, he crystallized the original mission of CBG and fostered new research on cross-sector issues of collaborative governance and global cooperation.

Ira recently moved on to a new challenge, leading a family foundation in Atlanta, and Joe Nye has asked me to carry on the impressive legacy of the Center and see it forward in new and exciting directions.  I’ve been at KSG for just a year, coming from the UN and, previously, Columbia and Berkeley.  In my new role as Director, I’ve already felt welcomed into this community, and look to continue to foster CBG’s relationship with you.  Ultimately, through guidance, leadership, and input from you, we will be able to keep our Center pinpointed at the critical intersection where private enterprise meets governance.

As I have been welcomed so warmly into the CBG community, so I would like to do the same for you and the many others who are joining the Center and our programs in what we hope and anticipate will be fruitful, engaging, and long relationships.  I hope you will take a moment to complete a short online questionnaire (http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/webform/cbg/communications.html) that will help us better determine our future relationship and, perhaps, allow us to broaden our community of participants.  Furthermore, I’d like to invite you to join me at our second annual CBG Tailgate Party here in the courtyard of the Kennedy School on September 21st, beginning at 10:30am, followed by the Harvard/Holy Cross football game.  I look forward to a casual, fun opportunity to get to know you and your family better.  Please let Amy Christofer (617-496-4624) know if you would like to join us.

Let me take this opportunity to especially welcome a few of our newest affiliates:

·        First, 60 high level government officials from China arrived in Cambridge last week for a month as a part of Asia Program’s China’s Leaders in Development Program.

·        35 new Fellows and Senior Fellows are arriving daily to spend time with us, collaborating with our faculty, researching, teaching, and engaging in our activities.  I encourage you to take a look at their impressive credentials and goals for their time here at the Fellows Program website: http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/cbg/fellows/current_bios.htm.

·        Three new staff members have arrived to be a part of our team: Alene Tchourumoff, Amy Conly, and Isabelle Portzenheim (you’ll be learning to pronounce her name when you call my office, which is where she’ll be).

CBG is at a unique position in its history.  The economic landscape has altered dramatically both domestically and globally.  This shift has called into question the role that businesses and governments need to play.  How, for instance, should the U.S. government alleviate the crisis in corporate governance in the wake of egregious malfeasance by some of our private sector leaders?   How can all sectors of society – civic, public, and private – better collaborate to ensure ethical corporate behavior and environmental sustainability, alleviate global problems from debt relief to the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and facilitate a transition faced by developing nations into the global marketplace?

With our existing and new intellectual resources, CBG is poised to address such issues, and I’d like to close out my inaugural communication with you by noting a few activities that will initiate what I hope to be a continuing dialogue.  We will, of course, resume our regular seminar series in regulation, environmental economics, and other topical issues.  In addition, on September, 16th, our Regulatory Policy Program will sponsor a public Forum at the Kennedy School titled “Crisis in Capital Markets: How Do We Restore Public Confidence?”  I hope you will use our website as a resource for upcoming activities and events: http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/cbg/events.html.

Thank you for the welcome I have received, and best of luck to you as we begin a new academic year.

Cheers.

 John Ruggie signature

John G. Ruggie, Director

Center for Business and Government

 
 
 
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