The appointment of Albert Carnesale as provost may be the prescription that integrates the University's decentralized schools and departments, but it is a bitter pill for the Kennedy School of Government faculty to swallow.
The departure of Carnesale from the Kennedy School deanship leaves vacant a post which has had three different occupants in the last five years. Some professors say Carnesale, who became dean in 1991, had finally brought stability to the school.
"I think [Carnesale's promotion] is a great choice for Harvard and a terrible choice for the Kennedy School," said Robert Z. Lawrence, Williams professor of international trade and investment.
Carnesale began his term at the Kennedy School when Robert D. Putnam, Gurney professor of political Science and associate dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, resigned after serving for only two years.
Carnesale and Putnam's tenures came in the aftermath of a particularly rocky period of expansion under Dillon Professor of Government Gra
Possible successors to Carnesale could includeIBM Professor of Business and Government Roger B.Porter, Whitehead Professor of Government DennisF. Thompson or government professors Joseph S.Nye. Both Thompson and Nye are currently on leave.
Professors say Carnesale's muchtouted successleading the Kennedy School may be the reason forhis appointment to replace current Provost JerryR. Green, who announced his decision to return toteaching last month.
The University has made no official comment onGreen's departure--which has caused faculty andadministrators to question whether he had beenforced out.
"Al Carnesale is an enormously able and giftedadministrator, and it is understandable whyPresident Rudenstine would have a great interestin him serving as provost for the University,"Porter said.
Carnesale's mission when he began the KennedySchool deanship was to reunite a school so bloatedby expansion that faculty members described it asbeing in danger of "flying apart."
Professors say Carnesale has fulfilled thatmission so admirably that the school will miss hisleadership.
"we are a school which has had a lot ofuncertainty," Lawrence said. "We'd not only had arotation of deans, we'd finally found the rightone."
Kennedy School spokesperson Steve Singer saidMonday that Carnesale plans to serve in bothposition until a new Kennedy School dean isselected.
Several professors said Carnesale's candidacyfor provost, which was reported last month in TheCrimson, has been widely rumored since theUniversity announced that Green would leave hispost.
"There has been a good deal of speculation thatit might be in the works, so I don't think it tookmany people by surprise," Porter said.