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Kannan Ramaswamy

Kannan Ramaswamy

William D. Hacker Chair, Department of Global Business, Thunderbird School of Global Management

Thunderbird Shool of Global Management
Arizona State University
400 E. Van Buren Street, Suite 900
Phoenix, AZ 85004


  • Senior Global Futures Scientist, Julie Ann Wrigley Global Futures Laboratory
  • William D. Hacker Chair, Department of Global Business, Thunderbird School of Global Management


Kannan Ramaswamy, PhD, is the William D. Hacker Chair Professor of Management in the Department of Global Business at Thunderbird School of Global Management. He is world-renowned for his expertise on global strategy, emerging markets – including India and South Asia, the energy sector, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions and global management. A native of India who is now a U.S. citizen, Dr. Ramaswamy has consulted for several U.S. and European multinationals. He is an award-winning executive educator whose teaching and research interests span emerging market multinationals, business groups and corporate diversification, mergers and acquisitions, privatization, and joint ventures.

In addition to teaching in Thunderbird’s full-time programs, Dr. Ramaswamy teaches extensively in the school’s Executive Education programs. He has participated in programs with multinational companies including American Express, EDS Corp. (now part of Hewlett-Packard Co.), Dow Chemical, General Motors, Mattel, Brasil Telecom, Delta Air Lines, Astellas Pharmaceutical (Japan), LG Electronics (Korea), Ericsson, Motorola, ExxonMobil, Baker Hughes, ONGC (India), Integra (Russia), and SK Corp. (Korea). Dr. Ramaswamy also directs several Thunderbird programs including the program on Globalization: Merging Strategy with Action that deals with global strategy issues, and the Advanced Management Program for Oil and Gas Industry Executives dealing with contemporary issues in oil and gas.

Dr. Ramaswamy’s research – which has appeared in distinguished journals including Strategic Management Journal, Journal of International Business Studies, Academy of Management Journal, Management International Review, Journal of Management and Journal of Business Research – focuses on a broad range of topics: challenges facing emerging market multinationals, the performance impact of corporate diversification; competitive consequences of privatization; the role of strategic fit in mergers and acquisitions; and equity vs. operational-control issues in joint ventures. Much of his recent research in these areas has centered on emerging markets. Dr. Ramaswamy’s work has been featured among the best papers at these prestigious national meetings eight times; his work was chosen “best paper” twice at the Academy of Management national meetings. As a faculty member at the academic institutions he has served, Dr. Ramaswamy has won numerous awards for research excellence.

A member of the board of reviewers of the Journal of International Business Studies and the editorial board of the Journal of International Management, and the Asia Pacific Journal of Management, Dr. Ramaswamy has also served as guest editor of a special issue of the Journal of Operations Management on “knowledge offshoring.” With Thunderbird professor Andrew Inkpen, Dr. Ramaswamy co-authored the book Global Strategy: Creating and Sustaining Advantage across Borders published by the Oxford University Press. Dr. Ramaswamy earned a PhD in strategic management from Virginia Tech; an MBA from the University of Madras in India; and a BS in physics from the University of Madras.


  • PhD, Strategic Management, Virginia Tech
  • MBA, Business Administration, University of Madras
  • BS, Physics, University of Madras


Journal Articles


Ramaswamy, K. and S. Purkayastha. 2017. When does it make sense to focus business portfolios? A study of business group responses to institutional change in India. Journal of Asia Business Studies 11(4):466-480. DOI: 10.1108/JABS-09-2016-0124. (link )

Ramaswamy, K., S. Purkayastha and B. S. Petitt. 2017. How do institutional transitions impact the efficacy of related and unrelated diversification strategies used by business group?. Journal of Business Research 72(Mar):1-13. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbusres.2016.11.005. (link )


Cuervo-Cazurra, A., A. Inkpen, A. Musacchio and K. Ramaswamy. 2014. Governments as owners: State-owned multinational companies. Journal of International Business Studies 45(8):919=942. DOI: 10.1057/jibs.2014.43. (link )

Krause, D., W. Youngdahl and K. Ramaswamy. 2014. Manufacturing -- still a missing link?. Journal of Operations Management 32(7-8):399-402. DOI: 10.1016/j.jom.2014.09.001. (link )


Ramaswamy, K., M. Li and B. S. Petitt. 2012. Why do business groups continue to matter? A study of market failure and performance among Indian manufacturers. Asia Pacific Journal of Management 29(3):643-658. DOI: 10.1007/s10490-010-9215-7. (link )


Youngdahl, W. E., K. Ramaswamy and K. C. Dash. 2010. Service offshoring: the evolution of offshore operations. International Journal of Operation & Production Management 30(8):798-820. DOI: 10.1108/01443571011068171. (link )


Youngdahl, W. E. and K. Ramaswamy. 2008. Offshoring knowledge and service work: A conceptual model and research agenda. Journal of Operations Management 26(2):212-221. DOI: 10.1016/j.jom.2007.02.007. (link )

Youngdahl, W. E., K. Ramaswamy and R. Verma. 2008. Exploring new research frontiers in offshoring knowledge and service processes. Journal of Operations Management 26(2):135-140. DOI: 10.1016/j.jom.2007.03.003. (link )


Inkpen, A. and K. Ramaswamy. 2007. End of the multinational: Emerging markets redraw the picture. Journal of Business Strategy 28(5):4-12. DOI: 10.1108/02756660710820776. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. 2007. Asian management research needs broader initiatives and focused incentives. Asia Pacific Journal of Management 24(4):519-525. DOI: 10.1007/s10490-007-9039-2. (link )


Li, M., K. Ramaswamy and B. S. Pécherot Petitt. 2006. Business groups and market failures: A focus on vertical and horizontal strategies. Asia Pacific Journal of Management 23(4):439-452. DOI: 10.1007/s10490-006-9016-1. (link )


Ramaswamy, K., M. Li and B. S. Pécherot Petitt. 2004. Who drives unrelated diversification? A study of Indian manufacturing firms. Asia Pacific Journal of Management 21(4):403-423. DOI: 10.1023/B:APJM.0000048711.41701.f3. (link )


Moffett, M. H. and K. Ramaswamy. 2003. Fashion faux pas: Gucci & LVMH. Thunderbird International Business Review 45(2):225-239. DOI: 10.1002/tie.10064. (link )


Ramaswamy, K. 2002. Singapore International Airlines: Strategy with a smile. Thunderbird International Business Review 44(4):533-555. DOI: 10.1002/tie.10027. (link )

Ramaswamy, K., M. Li and R. Veliyath. 2002. Variations in ownership behavior and propensity to diversify: A study of the Indian corporate context. Strategic Management 23(4):345-358. DOI: 10.1002/smj.227. (link )


Ramaswamy, K. 2001. Organizational ownership, competitive intensity, and firm performance: An empirical study of the Indian manufacturing sector. Strategic Management 22(10):989-998. DOI: 10.1002/smj.204. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. and M. Li. 2001. Foreign investors, foreign directors and corporate diversification: An empirical examination of large manufacturing companies in India. Asia Pacific Journal of Management 18(2):207-222. DOI: 10.1023/A:1010620008101. (link )


Ramaswamy, K., R. Veliyath and L. Gomes. 2000. A study of the determinants of CEO compensation in India. MIR: Managemwent International Review 40(2):167-191. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. and M. Von Glinow. 2000. Organizational performance following changes in ownership: Modelling post-privatization outcomes. Briefing in Entrepreneurial Finance 9(5):297-310. DOI: 10.1002/1099-1697(200008)9:5<297::AID-JSC500>3.0.CO;2-5. (link )

Veliyath, R. and K. Ramaswamy. 2000. Social embeddedness, overt and covert power, and their effects on CEO pay: An empirical examination among family businesses in India. Family Business Review 13(4):293-311. DOI: 10.1111/j.1741-6248.2000.00293.x. (link )


Gomes, L. and K. Ramaswamy. 1999. An empirical examination of the form of the relationship between multinationality and performance. Journal of International Business Studies 30(1):173-187. (link )


Ramaswamy, K., L. Gomes and R. Veliyath. 1998. The performance correlates of ownership control: A study of U.S. and European MNE joint ventures in India. International Business Review 7(4):423-441. DOI: 10.1016/S0969-5931(98)00022-5. (link )


Ramaswamy, K. 1997. The performance impact of strategic similiarity in horizontal mergers: Evidence from the U.S. banking industry. The Academy of Management Journal 40(3):697-715. DOI: 10.2307/257059. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. and M. Li. 1997. Strategic change among U.S. business schools: A strategic group analysis. Journal of Education for Business 72(6):343-347. DOI: 10.1080/08832323.1997.10116868. (link )


Ramaswamy, K., K. G. Kroeck and W. Renforth. 1996. Measuring the degree of internationalization of a firm: A comment. Journal of International Business Studies 27(1):167-177. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. and W. Renforth. 1996. Competitive intensity and technical efficiency in public sector firms: Evidence from India. International Journal of Public Sector Management 9(3):4-17. DOI: 10.1108/09513559610124441. (link )

Thomas, A. S. and K. Ramaswamy. 1996. Matching managers to strategy: Further tests of the miles and snow typology. British Journal of Management 7(3):247-261. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-8551.1996.tb00118.x. (link )


Ramaswamy, K. and V. K. Ramaswamy. 1995. Multinationality, configuration and performance: A study of MNEs in the U.S. drugs and pharmaceutical industry. Journal of International Management 1:231-253.


Ramaswamy, K., A. S. Thomas and R. J. Litschert. 1994. Organizational performance in a regulated environment: The role of strategic orientation. Strategic Management Journal 15(1):63-74. (link )

Thomas, A. S. and K. Ramaswamy. 1994. Matching managers to strategy: An investigation of pefor Mance implications and boundary conditions. Australian Journal of Management 19(1):73-93. DOI: 10.1177/031289629401900105. (link )

Veliyath, R., S. P. Ferris and K. Ramaswamy. 1994. Business strategy and top management compensation: The mediating effects of employment risk, firm performance and size. Journal of Business Research 30(2):149-159. DOI: 10.1016/0148-2963(94)90034-5. (link )


Thomas, A. S. and K. Ramaswamy. 1993. Environmental change and managemwent staffing: A comment. Journal of Managemwent 19(4):877-887. DOI: 10.1177/014920639301900408. (link )


Ramaswamy, K. 1992. Enhancing business school effectiveness: A multiple-consitituency approach. Journal of Education for Business 67(6):353-357. DOI: 10.1080/08832323.1992.10117572. (link )

Ramaswamy, K. 1992. Multinationality and performance: A synthesis and redirection. Advances in International Comparative Management 7:241-267.


Thomas, A. S., R. J. Litschert and K. Ramaswamy. 1991. The performance impact of strategy-manager coalignment: An empirical examination. Strategic Management Journal 12(7):509-522. (link )



Inkpen, A. C., M. H. Moffett and K. Ramaswamy. 2017. The Global Oil and Gas Industry: Case Studies from the Field. PennWell Corp. Tulsa, OK. ISBN: 978-1593703813.


Inkpen, A. and K. Ramaswamy. 2006. Global Strategy: Creating and Sustaining Advantage Across Borders. Oxford University Press. New York, NY. ISBN: 978-0195167207.

Book Chapters


Inkpen, A. C. and K. Ramaswamy. 2018. State-owned multinationals and drivers of sustainability practices: An exploratory study of national oil companies. Pp. 95-117 In: Dorobantu, S., R. V. Aguilera, J. Luo and F. J. Milliken eds., Sustainability, Stakeholder Governance, and Corporate Social Responsibility. Vol 38. Emerald Publishing Limited. ISBN: 978-1-78756-316-2 .


Inkpen, A. and K. Ramaswamy. 2017. Breaking up global value chains: Evidence from the global oil and gas industry. Pp. 55-80 In: Pedersen, T., T. M. Devinny, L. Tihanyi and A. Camuffo eds., Breaking up the Global Value Chain: Opportunities and Consequences. Vol 30. Emerald Publishing. ISBN: 978-1-78743-072-3 .


Ramaswamy, K. and W. Renforth. 1998. An empirical comparison of commercial profitability in the private and public sector of India: Indentifying the effect of competitive intensity. Pp. 110-122 In: Rao, C. P. ed., Globalization, Privatization and the Free Market Economy. Quorum Books. Westport, CT. ISBN: 978-1567200751.


Ramaswamy, K., W. Renforth and V. K. Ramaswamy. 1995. A comparative study of commercial profitability, managerial efficiency, and public interest in SOEs in India: Implications for privatization in developing countries. Pp. 99-126 In: Prasad, S. B. ed., Advances in International Comparative Management. Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Bingley, UK. ISBN: 978-1559389167.

Blog Posts


Ramaswamy, K. and W. Youngdahl. 2013. Are you your employees' worst enemy? [Blog Post]. Retrieved from link


Moffett, M. H. and K. Ramaswamy. 2011. LVMH and Hermés: The danger of going ‘a little bit public' [Blog Post]. Retrieved from link