Aswath Damodaran: The Kerschner Family Chair in Finance Education & Professor of Finance at NYU Stern School of Business.

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Bio:

Aswath Damodaran holds the Kerschner Family Chair in Finance Education and is Professor of Finance at New York University Stern School of Business. Before coming to Stern, he also lectured in Finance at the University of California, Berkeley. Professor Damodaran received a B.A. in Accounting from Madras University and a M.S. in Management from the Indian Institute of Management. He earned an M.B.A. (1981) and then Ph.D. (1985), both in Finance, from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Professor Damodaran's contributions to the field of Finance have been recognized many times over. He has been the recipient of Giblin, Glucksman, and Heyman Fellowships, a David Margolis Teaching Excellence Fellowship, and the Richard L. Rosenthal Award for Innovation in Investment Management and Corporate Finance.

His skill and enthusiasm in the classroom garnered him the Schools of Business Excellence in Teaching Award in 1988, and the Distinguished Teaching award from NYU in 1990. His student accolades are no less impressive: he has been voted "Professor of the Year" by the graduating M.B.A. class five times during his career at NYU.

In addition to myriad publications in academic journals, Professor Damodaran is the author of several highly-regarded and widely-used academic texts on Valuation, Corporate Finance, and Investment Management. Professor Damodaran currently teaches Corporate Finance and Equity Instruments & Markets. His research interests include Information and Prices, Real Estate, and Valuation.

What do you do best?

1.    See the big picture, partly because I have my feet planted in all three aspects of finance: corporate finance, portfolio management and valuation, and partly because I have the luxury of time (to ruminate).

2.    Teach my version of the big picture.

3.    Have fun with (1) and (2).

What makes you the best?

Perhaps because I don’t care about being the “best”, just about being the “best that I can be”. That way, I don’t have to measure up against the expectations of others, just my own.

How will you stay the best?

By not trying so hard. If I enjoy what I am doing, am doing all that I can and I make a difference, I am already the best. So, why try any harder?

Biggest success?

Making a difference in how my students see markets, think about investing and perhaps think about life.

My four children

What are your aspirations?

Personal: To be a good person. (I don’t always succeed but I keep trying.)

Business: To disrupt the education business, upend the university monopoly and put university professors on the unemployment line.

Most challenging moment?

That I cannot control the way other people behave and that I should be okay with it.

What fascinates you?

How psychology and numbers come together as market prices.

Favorite Motto:

Don’t sweat the small stuff!

Don’t take yourself too seriously!

Favorite People:

The Dalai Lama, Oliver Sachs

Favorite Places:

New York, Kauai, La Jolla

Favorite Products:

Anything from Apple

Current Passions:

Watching the Yankees