- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center Newsletter

Allison Hands Belfer Baton to Ash Carter and Eric Rosenbach

| Spring 2017

Harvard Kennedy School Dean Douglas Elmendorf announced on March 28 that Belfer Center Director Graham Allison will step down as director of the Center at the end of the academic year and will be succeeded by former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Carter’s former Chief of Staff Eric Rosenbach. Both Carter and Rosenbach are alumni of the Belfer Center.

Carter will join Harvard Kennedy School as the Belfer Center Director and the Belfer Professor of Technology and Global Affairs, a new professorship established by a gift from Robert and Renée Belfer. As Secretary of Defense, Carter, a physicist, became known for pushing the Pentagon to “think outside its five-sided box.” At Harvard, he will focus his scholarship on the role of innovation and technology in addressing challenges at home and around the world.

Eric Rosenbach will serve as co-director and as Lecturer in Public Policy at the Kennedy School. Rosenbach served as Carter’s Chief of Staff at the Pentagon, the first principal cyber advisor to the Secretary of Defense, and Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense and Global Security. A Kennedy School graduate, Rosenbach was Executive Director for Research at the Belfer Center before entering government.

Allison has directed the Belfer Center since 1995, building a dynamic research center that is the hub of Harvard Kennedy School’s research, teaching, and training in international security and diplomacy, environmental and resource issues, and science and technology policy. For the past four years, the Belfer Center has been named the top-ranked university-affiliated research center in the world according to the Global Go-To Think Tank Index at the University of Pennsylvania. Allison, who was the Founding Dean of the modern Kennedy School, will remain at the School as the Douglas Dillon Professor of Government.

“It is impossible to overestimate Graham’s vision and energy in making the Belfer Center the successful and influential organization it is today,” Elmendorf said in his announcement.

“I have been proud to lead the Belfer Center for over two decades,” Allison said, “and I am grateful to hand the baton to my good friend Ash Carter to lead the institution we love into the future. I appreciate and applaud the extraordinary efforts of Bob Belfer and Doug Elmendorf that have made this happen.”

 “I look forward to leading this vital Center and helping develop the next generation of global leaders,” said Carter. “Technology has a fundamental role to play in solving some of our nation’s and other nations’ most complex problems, and I look forward to working with the Kennedy School’s world-class scholars and students to explore how innovation can advance the public good.”

Harvard President Drew Faust said, “I am delighted to welcome Ash Carter back to Harvard. His career has been one of great academic accomplishment and distinguished government service, most recently as Secretary of Defense. His knowledge, experience, and commitment to the future of public service and public policy will be of great benefit to our students and scholars and to the world well beyond our walls.”

For more information on this publication: Please contact the Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

"Allison Hands Belfer Baton to Ash Carter and Eric Rosenbach." Belfer Center Newsletter. Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School (Spring 2017).


Graham Allison

Ash Carter

Eric Rosenbach