Knowledge and Communication

Leadership in Crisis: Toxic Donations at MIT (B)

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In 2019, media revealed that the MIT Media Lab was accepting donations from a wealthy individual who had been convicted of sexual misbehavior in the past, and more recently as a serial predator. Internal and external stakeholders reacted with contempt and anger. Media Lab first reaction was insufficient, and its director had to resign. The problem then passed to the president of MIT. Part B covers the initiatives for recovery and renewal.
Bibliographic citation: DE LA CIERVA, Y., ARMSTRONG, A. (2022). Leadership in Crisis: Toxic Donations at MIT (B). IESE, DPO-755-E.
Date: 01/01/2022
Author(s): Yago De la Cierva; Angus Armstrong
Document type: Case
Department: Managing People in Organizations
Languages: English / English
Learning objective This episode is a very good example of a crisis whose roots are in the corporate culture. The class discussion will examine what strategy to follow when finding an internal problem top management is not aware of, and how to transform a big problem into a good opportunity for cultural renewal.