The Harvard University Business School moves from Argentina to Uruguay: the country’s crisis, the flight of talents and a worrying projection

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After having spent more than 20 years in the country, a research center of the Harvard Business School, the Latin America Research Center (LARC), will move from Buenos Aires to Montevideo. The reason they claimed? The flight of professionals and talents across the pond.

“After 20 years of great achievements and wonderful memories in Buenos Aires, it was a decision made only after deep deliberation and consultation. It is important to highlight that this transfer will not affect in any way the current or future work of LARC in the region or in Argentina ”, began the letter signed by Michael Chu, president of the Faculty for Latin America, and Fernanda Miguel, executive director of LARC , which settled in the country in 2000 to “satisfy a strong interest on the part of the HBS (Harvard Business School) faculty in this dynamic region,” according to its official website.

“To support the research and teaching of HBS faculty, we need professionals with the best writing and analytical talents, bilingual (or trilingual) capabilities, strong academic backgrounds, and entrepreneurial sensibilities. Difficult conditions in Argentina, which you probably know well, have led to a persistent emigration of professionals with just these skills”, They were justified.

According to academics, the crisis and the flight of talents to Uruguay is a phenomenon that will last at least for the next 10 years: “Although it is impossible to predict the future, we believe that in the next decade the probability that current trends will continue in Argentina is greater than that of their reversal.”

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“With this in mind, we have come to the conclusion that we can better serve LARC’s overall mission in the coming years by moving to the other side of the Rio de la Plata,” they added. The move will occur in the second half of 2022. As indicated by the LARC, they will maintain their regional offices in Mexico City and São Paulo, Brazil.

In the statement, Chu and Miguel highlighted the advantages of Uruguay over Argentina: “As you know, it has long stood out for its institutional stability and its attractive business climate. With the highest per capita income and the most egalitarian GINI coefficient in Latin America, Uruguay has been called the ‘Switzerland of the Americas’. It is also the regional headquarters of a growing number of Latino and multinational companies”.

“From a financial point of view, the one-time cost of moving from Buenos Aires to Montevideo is not significant and ongoing costs can lead to small savings. From a personal point of view, the proximity of Montevideo will allow the staff to maintain active family ties, and the almost identical culture and language will require practically no adaptation ”, they considered.

Finally, they tried to avoid controversy by stating that it is a mere “transfer of an administrative office” so they will not make “any public announcement, preferring to keep it as an internal matter and away from public debate.”

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