St John's College Oxford

Professor Karthik Ramanna

Supernumerary Fellow

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Biography

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.

Karthik was previously on the faculty of Harvard Business School. At Harvard, he also held the Henry B. Arthur Fellowship in ethics, the Marvin Bower Fellowship recognising innovative faculty research, and a visiting fellowship at the Kennedy School of Government. Additionally, he is a faculty associate of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.

At Harvard, Karthik taught the MBA course Leadership & Corporate Accountability, where he helped build a curriculum to develop leaders who can confront the 21st century’s most challenging problems. 

Karthik serves on the editorial boards of several scientific journals, including as co-editor of the interdisciplinary journal Accounting, Economics & Law and as associate editor of the Journal of Accounting & Economics, the most-cited outlet in that field.

To more directly impact business policy, Karthik occasionally writes for the popular press, including the New York Times and the Economic Times. He has also consulted with the Brookings Institution, the Center for Audit Quality, and several leading auditing and financial firms. 

Karthik received his Ph.D. in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is an American citizen.

Research Interests

Karthik’s scholarship explores the role of business leadership in shaping the basic rules that govern capital-market societies. His book Political Standards: Corporate Interest, Ideology and Leadership in the Shaping of Accounting Rules for the Market Economy (University of Chicago Press, 2015) studies the political and economic forces that have shaped corporate financial reporting standards over the last 30 years. He argues that accounting rule making is an allegory for the “thin political markets” where businesses shape – and sometimes subvert – the essential technical edifices of our economy.

 His scholarship has won awards from numerous bodies such as the American Accounting Association.