The top job at a top US business school has gone to an Indian-origin academic yet again, with the appointment of Srilata E Zaheer as dean of the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota.
Carlson was ranked among the top 30 business schools in the US by Businessweek, and Zaheer is its first India-origin dean, landing the position after 20 years teaching there.
Zaheer joined Carlson from MIT in 1991 for a three-year stint. But she stayed on, was named interim dean in June 2011, and full-fledged dean in March. Interview
She joins a growing group of Indian-origin biz school deans, which already has Nitin Nohria at Harvard, Soumitra Dutta at Cornell and Sunil Kumar at Booth, University of Chicago.
So, what makes Indians so special?
“There were a lot of students from the very best Indian schools who came to the US to do their PhDs in the ’70s and ’80s,” Zaheer said in an online interview to Hindustan Times.
“What you are seeing now is their coming of age, if you will,” she said.
Dipak C Jain was possibly the first Indian to head a US business school when he was named dean of Kellogg at Northwestern University in 1993.
Jain stepped down after 13 years as dean of Kellogg, and now heads INSEAD, a business school in France.