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    Program Fee: The program fee includes tuition, housing, curricular materials and most meals.
    Executive Certificate: This program is a core program in the Public Leadership and Public Policy concentrations. This program can also be used as a third program for any concentration in the Executive Certificate series.
    Executive Core Qualifications (ECQs): This program aligns with one or more Executive Core Qualifications.


Senior Managers in Government is a transformative leadership program that offers you an exclusive opportunity for professional and personal enrichment. The curriculum is designed to address the needs of the U.S. Senior Executive Service (SES) in the federal government and their military, corporate sector, and international counterparts.

Faculty Chair Linda Bilmes will be joined by Harvard faculty and expert practitioners in government, law, education, and business for a robust two-week program to refresh and expand the core executive leadership skills you need to address the challenges of a large organization. You'll deepen your ability to think broadly, sharpen critical skill sets, and gain the new tools necessary to address today’s complex global challenges.

The Senior Managers in Government executive program will enhance your skills in:

  • Political management
  • Building organizational capacity
  • Policy development
  • Organizational performance
  • Negotiation
  • Planning for the future

Program Curriculum

During the two-week on-campus program, you'll immerse yourself in lectures and group work focused on building your capacity to lead. The materials include cutting-edge research and new ideas that will propel us into the next generation, drawing from across the spectrum of Harvard’s global expertise.

This curriculum makes extensive use of the case study method pioneered at Harvard. Each case describes an actual situation in public management that you and your classmates use to think through possible approaches and solutions to real-world problems. You'll reflect upon your professional experiences and meet daily in small groups and in class to discuss cases and exchange ideas.

Additional components of Senior Managers in Government include networking opportunities, experiential learning, and group outings, all of which allow you to build lasting relationships with the other participants.

Learning Objectives

Senior Managers in Government focuses on the multi-dimensional issues faced by senior managers and key areas of learning that you’ll experience include:

  • Policy Development: Structuring a decision-making process that draws on knowledge from all parts of an organization and designing policies to optimize implementation
  • Political Strategy: Mobilizing the support of key parties in an environment of shared responsibility to build support for a policy
  • Performance Management: Defining, assessing and improving organizational performance
  • Negotiation: Creating win-win outcomes, resolving differences and breaking stalemates
  • Leadership: Evaluating and improving leadership styles, including leadership in crisis situations

Application Information

View a sample program schedule. Note that module titles, speakers, and sequence may change.

What Participants are Saying

“Senior Managers in Government opens the aperture of not only knowledge, but also allows you to understand partner Government Agencies, Foreign Governments, and Foreign Trade organizations as they relate to national and economic global security.”

LaFonda D. Sutton-Burke, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Office of Field Operations (OFO), Director of Field Operations (DFO) for the Chicago Field Office
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Hear from the Faculty Chair

Linda Bilmes discusses the Senior Managers in Government  program.

Faculty & Research

Linda Bilmes Photo

Linda Bilmes

Daniel Patrick Moynihan Senior Lecturer in Public Policy

Cornell William Brooks Photo

Cornell William Brooks

Hauser Professor of the Practice of Nonprofit Organizations; Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership and Social Justice

Juliette Kayyem Photo

Juliette Kayyem

Belfer Senior Lecturer in International Security
Herman B. (Dutch) Leonard Photo

Herman B. (Dutch) Leonard

George F. Baker, Jr. Professor of Public Management, HKS; Eliot I. Snider and Family Professor of Business Administration, HBS
Elizabeth Linos Photo

Elizabeth Linos

Emma Bloomberg Associate Professor of Public Policy and Management

Pippa Norris Photo

Pippa Norris

Paul F. McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics

Deval Patrick Photo

Deval Patrick

Co-Director, Center for Public Leadership
David R. Gergen Professor of the Practice of Public Leadership
Roger Porter Photo

Roger Porter

IBM Professor of Business and Government
Hong Qu Photo

Hong Qu

Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy

Eric Rosenbach Photo

Eric Rosenbach

Senior Lecturer in Public Policy

Malcolm Sparrow Photo

Malcolm Sparrow

Professor of the Practice of Public Management
Guhan Subramanian

Guhan Subramanian

Joseph Flom Professor of Law and Business, Harvard Law School
Douglas Weaver Professor of Business Law, Harvard Business School

Lawrence H. Summers Photo

Lawrence H. Summers

Frank and Denie Weil Director of the Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government
Charles W. Eliot University Professor
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