Ash Carter accepts Harvard professorship

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Former Defense Secretary Ash Carter will follow his time as the top Pentagon civilian with a return to teaching at Harvard University, the school announced Tuesday.

Harvard named Carter as professor of technology and global affairs and director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, a think tank within the John F. Kennedy School of Government.

Carter, a physicist by trade, “will now lead the Belfer Center’s programs and will focus his scholarship on the role of innovation and technology in addressing challenges at home and around the world,” Harvard officials wrote in a press release.

{mosads}Carter was defense secretary under former President Barack Obama from 2015 until early the end of his second term.

While there, he established the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental, or DIUx, launched to build new relationships with technology companies, with offices in Silicon Valley and Boston. He also created a chief innovation officer position at the Pentagon to get the department cutting edge technology more quickly.

Carter previously taught at Harvard from 1996 to 2009 and was chair of International & Global Affairs faculty in the Kennedy School, as well as a board member for the Belfer Center.

“Technology has a fundamental role to play in solving some of our nation’s and other nations’ most complex problems, and I look forward to working with the Kennedy School’s world-class scholars and students to explore how innovation can advance the public good,” Carter said in the statement.

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