Born On: 3 February 1963
Born In: Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
Career: Financial Economist
Raghuram Rajan is among those few Indian economists who took the risk of criticizing the US financial System at the prime of his career (early 2000s) and warned the concerned people regarding its potential catastrophes. Studying in India and abroad, Raghuram Rajan gained a wealth of experience, which gave him a broad and analytic perspective on how systems work. Therefore, it was not a surprise when he came up with controversial papers chaffing the finance sector. Although it received a few brickbats initially, its strong implications on the flaws of financial sector didn't go unnoticed. However, he managed to prove himself as right with his later endeavors and earned a worldwide respect for his substantial work, to the extent that he was appointed as a financial advisor for the Prime Minister of India-the youngest person to hold this position. Keep reading for more information about the person who shook not just India with his analytic mind but also super-power nations like the U.S.A.
Raghuram Rajan was born in 1963 in the city of Bhopal. He did his bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, in the year 1985. After that, he went to complete his post-graduate program in Management from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad in the year 1987. Further, he wrote a thesis entitled "Essays on Banking" and received his PhD in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in the year 1991.
After completing his PhD from MIT, he started his career at Chicago University as an Assistant Professor. In 1996, he was appointed as a visiting professor at Stockholm School of Economics and Kellogg School in Northwestern University. In 2003, he became the Economic Counselor and Director of Research at the International Monetary Fund. In the same year, he received the Fischer Black Prize by the American Finance Association for his contribution to the theory and practice of finance at such an early age. He is known for his analytic and critical line of thought. In 2005, he shook the entire economy world with his controversial paper entitled "Has Financial Development Made the World Riskier?" In 2007, he resumed his career back into teaching for a short period. Later in 2008, he chaired the Indian Government's Committee on Financial Sector reforms. In the following year (2009), Dr. Rajan wrote a guest column for "The Economist", proposing a regulatory system that minimizes boom-bust financial cycles. In 2010, he was named in the list of top global thinkers by the Foreign Policy magazine. He even ranked in the first place in an Economist poll owing to his ideas in post-financial crisis world. Dr. Rajan also has had the honor of being an economic advisor to Manmohan Singh, the current Prime Minister of India. He has been on the editorial boards of the American Economic Review and Journal of Finance and his research articles and papers have been published in almost all the well established and famous economic and finance journals. In 2010, he received the Financial Times Business Book of the Year award for his book "Fault Lines: How Hidden Cracks Still Threaten the World Economy".
Currently, he is the senior advisor at BDT Capital, Booz and Co. and FDIC and a member of the advisory board of Bank Itau-Unibanco. Apart from being an advisor, he is also the Director of the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and Comptroller General of the United States Advisory Council. He is also the President of the American Finance Association and a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Raghuram Rajan's most important contribution has been to the theory and practice of finance. He has written numerous journals that have revolutionized the way that economy has been handled and how it should be handled. He has raised questions and sought the answers by working towards them himself.
Awards and Accolades