The committee searching for Harvard's next president will likely complete its preliminary short list of candidates by the end of next week, according to sources close to the search.
The sources, all University officials, estimate that the list will include the names of five to 10 candidates to succeed outgoing President Derek C. Bok, who will step down at the end of this academic year. Other names may still be added to the list, which sources say is not fixed.
One of the officials said, "Now or very soon, the [short] list will be compiled."
The committee is expected to report its progress to members of the Board of Overseers at the board's Cambridge meeting on December 8 and 9. The board, which is elected by alumni and meets five times annually, must approve the final selection for president.
It is unclear whether the committee will reveal the names on the list to the overseers at next week's meeting.
Since its first meeting this summer, the search committee, which is composed of six members of the Harvard Corporation and three overseers, has narrowed the field of candidates from a list of more than 200.
The original list included a number of high-profile Harvard scholars and administrators, as well as several top officials from other schools.
Although the committee had already arrived at its intermediate list of 35 to 50 candidates several weeks ago, University officials say the committee is still incorporating suggestions from Harvard affiliates.
The search committee mailed letters to faculty, students, staff and alumni soliciting their opinions on who the next president of Harvard should be. But as the result of a mailing error, the letters did not reach many students until this week.
The last time Harvard chose a new president, the Corporation mailed the letters to affiliates near the beginning of the search.
The presidential search committee includes the following Corporation members: D. Ronald Daniel, Judith R. Hope, Colman Mockler '52, Henry Rosovsky, Charles P. Slichter '46, who chairs the committee, and Robert G. Stone '45.
Three overseers are also serving on the search committee: Wesley S. Williams, Jr. '63, John C. Whitehead, and Hanna H. Gray.