Statements

  1. January 19, 2023 | Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Welcome the Reinstatement of Kenneth Roth and Renew Calls for Resignation of Dean Douglas Elmendorf
  2. January 10, 2023 | Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Call for Resignation of HKS Dean Douglas Elmendorf and Reinstatement of Human Rights Defender Kenneth Roth

January 19, 2023 | Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Welcome the Reinstatement of Kenneth Roth and Renew Calls for Resignation of Dean Douglas Elmendorf

January 19, 2023

For Immediate Release

Contacts:

Laila El-Haddad (HKS MPP ‘02) 

Ahmed Moor (HKS MPP ‘13)

Co-Conveners, Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Collective 

pacollective.hks@gmail.com  

Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Welcome the Reinstatement of Kenneth Roth and Renew Calls for Resignation of Dean Douglas Elmendorf

Statement by the Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Collective 

We welcome today’s announcement from the Harvard Kennedy School on Kenneth Roth’s fellowship appointment at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. We are heartened that Dean Douglas’ Elmendorf’s blocking of this appointment has now been lifted and that many members of the Harvard community will benefit from Roth’s wisdom next year. 

In his statement, Dean Elmendorf acknowledged that he had made  “an error” in his initial decision not to appoint Roth, adding that he is “sorry that the decision inadvertently cast doubt on the mission of the School.” 

Thanks are due to the 38 student groups and more than a thousand Harvard students and affiliates who took a clear position for academic freedom and against anti-Palestinian bias. We greatly appreciate the Carr Center leadership for raising the topic and The Nation for focusing and amplifying the issue. We are grateful to the HKS faculty who spoke up as well. And of course thanks to Kenneth Roth for the decades he’s committed to standing up for human rights around the world. 

Yet the reinstatement of Roth is not enough. We continue to seek Dean Elmendorf’s resignation. His values, implied by his original decision to withdraw Roth’s fellowship, are inconsistent with those of the community he is meant to represent.

Students, faculty and alumni from all backgrounds deserve leadership that acts thoughtfully and with care to preserve our shared principles. Dean Elmendorf is not that leader. 

Harvard Kennedy School Palestinian Alumni Collective