John and Natty McArthur University Professor
Harvard Business School
Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration
Harvard Business School
COURSE AT A GLANCE
“Reimagining Capitalism” is designed for those students who want to explore the idea that at least some of the “big problems” of our time – particularly environmental degradation and accelerating inequality - can be effectively addressed by high performing private firms. Historically these kinds of problems have often been assumed to be the responsibility of the state. The course explores why private firms might be able to play a major role in solving them in today’s world, and the ways in which accomplishing this may require changes in how firms and leaders consider their obligations and engage with the issues, as well as make changes in the “rules of the game” by which capitalism is structured. The course is primarily case based.
"Reimagining Capitalism should be required learning for everyone, regardless of their sector or beliefs about business. It empowered me with a fundamental understanding of economic systems, in the U.S. and abroad, in order to make it possible for me to question the assumptions upon which they are built and challenge me to rethink how we construct entities – public and private – to ensure long term success, including how we choose to define and measure success. This course helped create the context for me to make meaning of the rest of my MBA.”
-Chelsea Banks, MBA 2017
Rebecca Henderson is the John and Natty McArthur University Professor at Harvard University, where she has a joint appointment at the Harvard Business School in the General Management and Strategy units. Professor Henderson is also a research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research. Her work explores how organizations respond to large-scale technological shifts, most recently in regard to energy and the environment. She teaches Reimagining Capitalism in the MBA Program.
George Serafeim is the Jakurski Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School. He has taught courses in the MBA, executive education and doctoral programs, and is currently teaching the elective course “Reimagining Capitalism: Business and Big Problems” in the MBA curriculum. He has presented his research in over 60 countries around the world and is one of the most popular business authors, according to rankings of the Social Science Research Network.