Hannah Riley Bowles

Hannah Riley Bowles is a Senior Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and Research Director of its Women and Public Policy Program. Bowles teaches leadership and negotiation at the intersection of gender in public policy in various degree and executive training programs. She is globally engaged in the teaching, training and consulting of women leaders from the private, public, and non-profit sectors. In 2003, she won the Kennedy School’s Manuel Carballo Award for Excellence in Teaching at the Harvard Kennedy School.

In addition, Bowles is also the Faculty Director of the executive education program “Women & Power” and Area Chair of the Management, Leadership and Decision Sciences Area at the Harvard Kennedy School. From 2009 to 2013, she was the Research Director at the Kennedy School’s Center for Public Leadership. Bowles has been a member of numerous boards and committees at Harvard, including the National Advisory board for the National Preparedness Leadership Initiative, the Doctoral Studies Committee for the Faculty of Arts & Sciences Standing, and the Faculty Advisory Committee for the Women’s Policy Journal.

Bowles conducts research on gender in negotiation and the attainment of leadership positions. She has developed numerous cases on leadership in crisis and the management of complex multi-party conflicts. Her research appears in academic publications, such as the Psychology of Women Quarterly, Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Psychological Science, and Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.

Her work is frequently featured in news publications, television, and radio programs, including ABC News, Glamour, Harvard Gazette, National Public Radio, New York Times, Slate Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Time, The Boston Globe, and The Washington Post. Bowles is the second most quoted academic in Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In: Women Works, and the Will to Lead. In addition, she has appeared on ABC’s Katie Couric Show and NBC’s TODAY Show to discuss closing the gender wage gap and successful women’s negotiating techniques.

Earlier in her career, Bowles was a research associate at the Conflict Management Group and Harvard Business School. She was a technical advisor to the Minister of Natural Resources, Energy & Mines of Costa Rica and has been a fellow at the Argentinean National Institute of Public Administration, the West German Parliament, and Oxford University's Forestry Institute. She has a Doctor in Business Administration from the Harvard Business School, a Master in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School, and a Bachelor of Arts from Smith College.


Center for Public Leadership

Research Director, Women and Public Policy Program

Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School


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