Lauder Business School in Vienna, Austria, has ended its partnership with Harvard University due to concerns over the Ivy League institution's handling of antisemitism on campus. In a public statement, Lauder Business School expressed solidarity with the Jewish student community at Harvard University in light of recent events. The Austrian institution had been a part of Harvard's Microeconomics of Competitiveness Network since 2014 but has now decided to form new partnerships that align more closely with its core values and standards.
Harvard Business School declined to comment on the situation when approached by FOX Business. Lauder's decision comes shortly after Harvard President Dr. Claudine Gay's testimony during a House hearing on antisemitism, where she, along with leaders from the University of Pennsylvania and MIT, refused to acknowledge that calling for the genocide of Jews on their respective campuses breached their rules and amounted to harassment.
This move by Lauder Business School follows a trend of U.S. universities facing criticism for their response to antisemitic protests that occurred following the Hamas terrorist attacks and the subsequent Israel-Hamas war. Harvard faced severe backlash when 34 student organizations signed a statement blaming the "Israeli regime" for the violence. The university's leadership's response received criticism from alumni and donors, with billionaire alum Bill Ackman estimating that the handling of antisemitism has cost the school over $1 billion in donations.
Despite calls for President Gay's resignation and allegations of plagiarism in several instances, she has received a vote of confidence from the board of the Harvard Corporation and the support of several hundred faculty members.
It remains to be seen how this termination of partnership will affect both institutions moving forward. Lauder Business School will now seek new partnerships that align with its values, while Harvard University may face further scrutiny regarding its approach to addressing antisemitism on campus.