Harvard's Summers - A Presidency's Early End

A Presidency's Early End: ...To cite one high-profile example, work on Allston proceeded on its former course, with the appointment in January of a chief operating officer and a separate organization reporting directly to Summers (see 'Brevia'). The announcement on February 17 of a site and architect for a first building complex, comprising some 500,000 square feet of laboratory space, made tangible Summers's vision of a third locus for scientific research.
Those decisions put Allston development on a fast track - but without any evident process for the academic and administrative management of the research to be done there, or for coordinating that work with the rest of the University. Meanwhile, FAS is building extremely expensive and as yet unfilled labs (see 'Fraught Finances,' March-April, page 61), and Harvard Medical School has unused space (now leased out) in its New Research Building. Will these facilities end up competing with the new Allston space? Although the central administration had conducted a planning process for interdisciplinary research that might locate in Allston (see 'Scientific Ambitions,' July-August 2005, page 58), a University-wide review of the future of science at Harvard - embracing FAS and the medical and public-health schools, and examining appointments, academic administration, and more - began only this year, and will not even report until this summer...

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