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HBS Receives Major Gift For AI

Harvard Business School
Photo by John A. Byrne

HBS Receives Major Gift For AI

Harvard Business School has received a $5 million gift to explore the implications of artificial intelligence.

Stephen A. Schwarzman, chairman, CEO, and co-founder of Blackstone, donated the money in hopes spurring the efforts of HBS faculty members who are researching and writing case studies on AI, according to a Harvard Business School press release.

“Across Blackstone’s diverse portfolio, I have seen firsthand the impact that rapid technological change has on businesses and industries,” Schwarzman says in a press release. “The disruptive implications and opportunities surrounding AI are far-reaching. Executives need to understand how to anticipate, act on, and manage these changes. I am hopeful that through these case studies—hallmarks of the HBS experience that have helped train a century of business leaders— we can better prepare the next generation to help shape the application of AI in an ethical and accountable way that benefits the public interest.”

The Impact of AI

The impact of AI is far-reaching. It has the potential to offer $15.7 trillion to the global economy by 2030, according to a PwC report.

To prepare for its impact, businesses need to familiarize themselves with how roles, responsibilities, and key skill sets may be affected.

“With AI taking a leading role on tackling organizations’ simple and repetitive tasks, the human workforce can focus more on complex work that ultimately provides a greater level of professional fulfilment to employees and a more efficient use of critical thinking power,” Jeff Wong, global chief innovation officer at EY, tells the MIT Technology Review.

At Harvard, the goal is to prepare students for the impact of AI.

“AI has profound implications for the future of work and for society more broadly, Harvard Business School Dean Nitin Nohria says. “We believe it is imperative to provide our students with opportunities to explore how these changes will affect the role of managers. Steve’s generous gift will accelerate faculty research in this area, advancing understanding and exposing business leaders around the world to this increasingly important topic.”

Sources: Harvard Business School, PwC, MIT Technology Review