Center Governance

The Weatherhead Center for International Affairs is broadly guided by an Advisory Committee consisting of scholars and practitioners of international affairs, and it is directed on policy issues by an Executive Committee made up of Harvard senior faculty. The Center is also governed by its steering committee consisting of senior faculty who make decisions on faculty grants. The Advisory Committee meets twice per year, the Executive Committee up to three times each semester, and the Steering Committee three times per academic year.

Advisory Committee

The WCFIA Advisory Committee is a group of eminent persons who assist the Center with strategic direction and fundraising. The group is composed of 15–20 members and represents a combination of people from academia, the private sector, and other professions. The Advisory Committee Chair is nominated by the Faculty Director and approved by the Executive Committee. Committee members may be nominated by the Faculty Director, represent a wide range of fields, and serve three-year terms (which may be renewed). Determinations about renewal of terms are made by the Advisory Committee Chair, in close consultation with the Faculty Director. There are no term limits.

The committee is strictly advisory in nature. Meetings usually take place once a year in Cambridge. Subcommittees may be formed on an ad hoc basis to address particular needs.

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee oversees the strategic direction, academic plan, and financial sustainability of the Center. This committee is appointed by the Director of the Weatherhead Center. Members represent a wide range of disciplines in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and the professional schools at Harvard, and serve three-year terms (which may be renewed). Determinations about renewal of terms are made by the Faculty Director. There are no term limits.

The Executive Committee meets twice per semester, and meetings are chaired by the Faculty Director. Meeting agendas are circulated in advance and meeting minutes are approved by the committee. The Executive Director is a nonvoting member, and serves as the committee secretary. A meeting quorum is defined as a simple majority of the membership (excluding any members on leave).

At its first meeting of the spring semester, the Executive Committee reviews the Center’s budget for the coming fiscal year. Subcommittees may be formed, at the discretion of the Faculty Director, to oversee policy affairs, the academic affairs of the Center, and fundraising.

Steering Committee

The Steering Committee, appointed by the Faculty Director, is a “kitchen cabinet” group that serves as a sounding board and day-to-day consultative group for the Faculty Director. This committee is composed of the Faculty Director, 4–6 other Faculty Associates, and the Executive Director (nonvoting). Meetings occur three times per year, and on an ad hoc basis as needed. Meeting agendas are circulated in advance, and meeting notes are circulated afterward. The committee reviews and makes decisions on all faculty funding requests. Steering Committee meetings are chaired by the Faculty Director.