Mihir A. Desai

Mihir A. Desai

Professor of Finance and Law

Harvard University

San Francisco, CA USA

We underestimate the significance of geography. Go to where you want to be as fast as you can. You’re going to meet people, you’re going to be around things. Opportunities will open up.


By Roadtrip Nation

Mihir A. Desai


My road in life has taken me all over.
Was born in Bombay (now Mumbai), India, raised in Hong Kong, and later moved to New Jersey as a teenager.
Attended Brown University where he earned a bachelor’s degree in history.
After graduation, he “fell into the job market” and interviewed for a wide variety of positions—ended up working for an investment bank in New York for two years.
Decided to go to Harvard University for business school and earned an MBA.
While trying to decide whether to pursue consulting or banking for his career, he had an epiphany that told him neither was the right choice.
Moved to India for a year to figure things out—when he returned to the U.S., he went back to Harvard University to get his Ph.D. in political economy.
He’s now a professor of finance and law at Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School, respectively.
He’s also a renowned economist with expertise in tax policy, international finance, and corporate finance, and has authored publications on topics like tax policy and globalization.
Keep following my journey


Professor of Finance and Law

I am a professor, researcher, and thinker specializing in finance and tax policy.

Career Roadmap

My work combines:
My work combines:
Teaching / Mentoring

Day to Day

I typically teach classes at either the Law School or Business School. I have a lot of interesting conversations with colleagues and spend hours writing and attending conference calls with coauthors.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for college students

Start getting exposed to and used to conducting a large amount of research. The research you do as a student and as a teacher is very similar. Find great mentors who will tell you the truth and keep you focused on the goal no matter what.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:


The Noise I Shed

From Myself:

"I'm spending so much money on higher education. This will never be of benefit to me."

Challenges I Overcame

First-Generation Immigrant

Interviewed By

Risk & Reward

Risk & Reward

Think you know the world of insurance?