IBM Scientist is Named to K-School Post
Will Direct Science, Technology and Public Policy Program
The Kennedy School of Government has named IBM's former chief scientist and vice president to direct its Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program.
The scientist, Lewis M. Branscomb, is a former Harvard physics professor and a former member of the Board of Overseers. In addition to the administrative post, he will serve as a professor in the field of public service.
Branscomb directed the National Bureau of Standards in the Nixon Administration. He has served as chairman of the National Science Board, and as a member of the President's Science Advisory Committee and the President's National Productivity Advisory Committee.
K-School Dean Graham T. Allison '62 called the school's newest member a "top research physicist with a long and distinguished record of public service."
"Science and technology are the change-agents of our time, and can be an enormous force for addressing global problems. Never has a program of this kind been more needed," Branscomb said.
The Kennedy School program examines such topics as government support for research and development and the government's role in testing new technologies, said the program's retiring director, Harvey Brooks, Peirce Professor of Technology and Public Policy.
Brooks said his successor "enjoys a fine reputation particularly as a practitioner in the field." Branscomb, who received both a Master's and Ph.D. degree in physics from Harvard, specializes in the use of science by industry and the role of science in industry innovation.
The program grew out of a 1958 seminar taught by former Kennedy School Dean Don Price and has since developed a number of courses open to Kennedy School and other Harvard students, Brooks said.
Branscomb will assume his new post October 1.