Raghu Sundaram standing in front of Kaufman Management Center

Raghu Sundaram

Dean, Leonard N. Stern School of Business

Raghu assumed the Deanship in January 2018, following two years as Vice Dean of MBA Programs & Online Learning (2016-17). He has been a member of the Stern faculty since 1996 and was formerly at the University of Rochester from 1988-96.

As Vice Dean, Raghu's record of innovation includes the launch of focused one-year MBA programs; the development of new specialized masters programs joint with other schools at NYU; outreach to industry including securing the participation of business leaders from companies such as Amazon, Goldman Sachs, Jigsaw, Microsoft, IBM, and PayPal on the School’s newly created Tech MBA Advisory Board; the extension of the New York City-based Executive MBA program to downtown Washington, D.C., where it is now the highest ranked EMBA in that market; the establishment of the Creative Destruction Lab-New York City; and Stern’s entry into online education, including launching the first in a series of online certificate programs; among others. Raghu also has a long record of service to Stern and the University, including a two-year stint (2012-14) as the chair of the Tenured and Tenure-Track Faculty Senators Council and serving as a member of NYU’s Presidential Search Committee in 2014.

Raghu's research in finance covers a range of areas including agency problems, executive compensation, corporate finance, derivatives pricing, and credit risk & credit derivatives. He has also published extensively in mathematical economics, decision theory, and game theory. His research has appeared in leading academic journals in finance and economic theory as well as several practitioner-oriented journals. Among other distinctions, he has served on a number of editorial boards, received grants from the National Science Foundation and other organizations, won the Jensen Award, and been a finalist for the Brattle Prize.

Raghu is the author of two books: A First Course in Optimization Theory (Cambridge University Press, 1996) and Derivatives: Principles and Practice (McGraw-Hill, 2010). In 2007, he became the inaugural recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award from the Stern School of Business.

Academic Background

Ph.D., Economics, 1988 Cornell University
M.A., Economics, 1987 Cornell University
M.B.A., 1984 Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, India
B.A., Economics, 1982 University of Madras, India


Areas of Research

Derivatives: equity, interest-rate, & credit-risk
Executive Compensation
Agency & executive compensation
Corporate Finance
Corporate finance
Dynamic & Stochastic Games
Dynamic & stochastic games
Bandit Problems
Optimal learning & bandit problems
Game theory, economics, & dynamic programming

Selected Papers

Understanding Government Debt Options

October 25, 2016

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CDS Auctions and Informative Biases in CDS Recovery Rates

August 2012

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First-Purchase Rights: Rights of First Refusal and Rights of First Offer

October 10, 2012

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Derivatives in Financial Market Development

February 2013

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Cross-Country Variations in Capital Structure: The Role of Bankruptcy Codes

February 17, 2010

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An Integrated Model for Hybrid Securities


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A First Course in Optimization Theory

A First Course in Optimization Theory

This book introduces students to optimization theory and its use in economics and allied disciplines. The first of its three parts examines the existence of solutions to optimization problems in Rn, and how these solutions may be identified. The second part explores how solutions to optimization problems change with changes in the underlying parameters, and the last part provides an extensive description of the fundamental principles of finite- and infinite-horizon dynamic programming.

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Derivates: Principles & Pracitces


It has been the authors' experience that the overwhelming majority of students in MBA derivatives courses go on to careers where a deep conceptual, rather than solely mathematical, understanding of products and models is required. The first edition of Derivatives looks to create precisely such a blended approach, one that is formal and rigorous, yet intuitive and accessible.

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