Mukti Khaire

Associate Professor of Business Administration

Mukti Khaire is an Associate Professor at Harvard Business School. She teaches an elective course on entrepreneurship in creative industries that examines the relationship between business and culture.  She has previously taught the required first-year MBA course, “The Entrepreneurial Manager.” She has also taught in the HBS Executive Education programs, including custom executive education offerings, the preMBA, and START. Mukti currently serves as the Faculty Chair of the School's 2+2 initiative.

Mukti received her PhD in Management from Columbia Business School. Her dissertation explored how intangible resources such as legitimacy and status help new ventures grow despite their inherent financial constraints. She studied young ad agencies in New York and Chicago and examined how they overcame financial constraints and the problems associated with founder departure. In addition to quantitative analysis of longitudinal data, she interviewed several ad agency founders to understand how new ventures whose products are direct manifestations of their founders’ talents or abilities cope with expansion and founder departure.

Mukti’s research interests lie at the intersection of entrepreneurship, culture, and creative industries. She has studied how entrepreneurs construct the value of new products, creating new markets and affecting broader cultural institutions in the process. Her work has shed light on how entrepreneurs created a global market for modern Indian art and constructed a distinctive identity for Indian fashion. In other papers, she has examined the interaction among the media and entrepreneurs in the process of market-creation and is currently exploring the process of value-construction in market exchanges.

Mukti's case-writing focuses on entrepreneurship in uncertain or new markets and in the creative or cultural industries, market-creation, and the re-construction of value by entrepreneurs and its impact on society and culture.

Mukti received an award from the Eugene Lang Center for Entrepreneurship at Columbia Business School for her research on entrepreneurship in the advertising industry. Her paper, “Great Oaks from Little Acorns Grow: Strategies for New Venture Growth,” based on her dissertation is included in the Best Paper Proceedings of the 2005 Academy of Management Conference. Her papers have been accepted at various conferences including the American Sociological Association Conference, and the Organization Science Winter Conference. Her paper with Heather Haveman (on founder ideology) was included in “Columbia Ideas at Work” which showcases cutting-edge research at Columbia Business School which has practical applications. Mukti’s research has also been featured twice in the Entrepreneurship section of HBS Working Knowledge. One of these articles was among the top 20 most-read HBS Working Knowledge articles in 2008

Before Columbia University, Mukti got her Masters in Management from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay. For her B.S and M.S. from the University of Pune she received the Sathe Memorial Award and the Joshi Memorial Award for the top-ranked graduate. She worked as an environmental management consultant before IIT and co-founded a non-profit venture for enabling grassroots level biodiversity conservation.

Mukti currently lives in Cambridge. She and her husband Samir Patil are foodies and enjoy independent films and traveling. Most recently they visited Lisbon.

  1. Artist as Entrepreneur

    The Harvard University i-lab hosted a conversation entitled "Artist as Entrepreneur" with internationally acclaimed musician, composer, bandleader, educator and leading advocate of American culture, Wynton Marsalis, and HBS professors Nancy Koehn, Rohit Deshpande, and Mukti Khaire, moderated by HBS professor Mihir Desai on February 7, 2012. This conversation was open to the Harvard community and members of the public.

  2. The Indian Fashion Industry and Traditional Indian Crafts

    This study documents the emergence of the high-end fashion industry in India from the mid-1980s to 2005. Drawn from oral histories, magazine articles, and several databases, the study demonstrates that the Indian fashion industry's unique identity, based on heavily embellished traditional styles rather than innovative Western-style cuts and designs, was the result of the actions of early entrepreneurs.