Karthik Ramanna is Professor of Business & Public Policy and Director of the Master of Public Policy Programme at the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government. The MPP aspires to be the world’s preeminent programme for public-leadership development, and Professor Ramanna is responsible for its overall strategy and operation.
He joined Oxford in September 2016 after nearly a decade on the faculty of Harvard Business School. At Harvard, he also held the Henry B. Arthur Fellowship in ethics, the Marvin Bower Fellowship recognizing innovative faculty research, and a visiting fellowship at the Kennedy School of Government. Professor Ramanna received a Ph.D. in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. At Oxford, he is a fellow of St. John’s College.
Professor Ramanna’s scholarship explores the role of business leaders in shaping the basic rules that govern capital-market societies. His 2015 book Political Standards (University of Chicago Press) studies the political and economic forces that have shaped financial-reporting standards over the previous 30 years. He argues that accounting rulemaking is an allegory for the “thin political markets” where businesses shape – and sometimes subvert – the essential technical edifices of our economy.
At Harvard, Professor Ramanna taught the required MBA course Leadership & Corporate Accountability, where he helped build a curriculum to develop leaders who can confront the 21st century’s most challenging problems, including institutional corruption and income inequality. He has also taught accounting, finance, and general management to graduate students and senior executives.
Professor Ramanna has authored over a dozen original research articles in leading professional outlets such as the Journal of Accounting & Economics and the Harvard Business Review. His scholarship has won awards from numerous bodies such as the American Accounting Association. Professor Ramanna serves on the editorial boards of several scientific journals, including as co-editor of the interdisciplinary journal Accounting, Economics & Law.
He is also a prolific author of case studies, having written more than thirty cases over the past decade. In 2017, he was awarded the international Case Centre’s Outstanding Case-Writer prize, dubbed by the Financial Times as “the business school Oscars.” He has helped establish and now leads a case-writing institute at Oxford’s Blavatnik School. The institute aims to bring this powerful participant-centred pedagogy to public-leadership education.
To more directly impact business policy, Professor Ramanna occasionally writes for the popular press, including The New York Times and The Telegraph. He has also consulted with the Brookings Institution, the Center for Audit Quality, and several leading auditing and financial firms. He is a member of the International Advisory Board for the California Management Review and the Panel of Economic Advisors to the IPPR Commission on Economic Justice.