Guthrie eyes top-tier faculty

The dean of the GW School of Business aims to triple the school’s endowed faculty in the next five years in an effort to boost the University’s academic prowess.

Doug Guthrie, in his second year leading the business school, plans to hire 10 new faculty members from other institutions to receive endowed chairs supported by the business school’s fundraising. The school currently has five endowed chair faculty.

“If our school is really going to become an elite school, we need to hire people who are the top scholars and teachers in the country,” Guthrie said. “In order to send the signal to the country and the rest of the world that we are truly a major player among the elite schools, we have to hire some of those people away from the elite schools.”

Guthrie’s goal for a more selective hiring program comes one year after the business school added only three new faculty members, the smallest percentage of new faculty hired among every other school at GW.

The planned hiring spree will focus on professors who are “stars or rising stars, with outstanding research and teaching credentials,” Vice Dean for Faculty and Research Sok-Hyon Kang said.

“I say it’s ambitious because it’s very, very difficult to hire the really top-notch and top-of-the-line faculty. Every university is seeking them, and they’re probably very comfortable in their position and in their location,” Kang said. “As a result, you really have to do a lot of work, and offer them hefty compensation packages to recruit them.”

Kang declined to elaborate on the estimated cost of adding endowed faculty.

The money for professor endowments will come from the school’s own fundraising efforts, and not University investments, Guthrie said. Guthrie did not return a request for comment on the cost for the endowed chairs.

Timothy Fort, a Lindner-Gambal professor of business ethics, said the addition of top professors creates more opportunities for research, as “chaired positions typically come with research funds and time.”

“That’s a big boon to all kinds of research, teaching and other faculty advancement kinds of issues,” Fort said.

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