Expert Profile

Derek Bok
300th Anniversary Research Professor
Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government

Derek C. Bok, J.D., L.L.D., has been a lawyer and Professor of Law, Dean of the Law School, and President of Harvard University. He served as 300th Anniversary University Professor, and since July 2003, he’s been serving as 300th Anniversary Research Professor.

He has written six books on higher education, Beyond the Ivory Tower (1982), Higher Learning (1986), Universities and the Future of America (1990), The Shape of the River (1998), Universities in the Marketplace (2003), and Our Underachieving Colleges (2006). He has also published Labor and the American Community (1970) and The Cost of Talent (1993) about how our executives and professionals are paid and why it matters. His research interests also include the adequacy of government in the United States in coping with the nation’s domestic problems. He published a book on this subject entitled The State of the Nation (1996) and a sequel entitled The Trouble with Government (2001).

He has served on the Board of Trustees of the World Resources Institute, the University of Massachusetts, and Chair of the Board of Overseers of the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. In 1999, he became the National Chair of Common Cause, a position he held until 2006. He is presently Chair of the Spencer Foundation and Faculty Chair of the Hauser Center for the study of nonprofit organizations and philanthropy at Harvard.

Derek Bok's discussions:

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Sharon Squassoni Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Deborah Wadsworth Public Agenda
Geoff Mulgan Young Foundation
Jeanie Moore Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
Sol Stern Manhattan Institute
Michael Traynor American Law Institute

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  • Risk and Legal Fear in Schools
    With Lenore Skenazy, Frederick Hess, Megan Rosker, Walter Olson, and Nancy McDermott. Start date: June 5