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Garth Saloner

Philip H. Knight Professor and Dean


Garth Saloner has served as the ninth dean of Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB) since 2009. He has previously held positions as senior associate dean for academic affairs, director for research and curriculum development, and director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.

Saloner’s career is highlighted by a deep passion for entrepreneurship and a commitment to educating students to think and act with a comprehensive economic perspective. His intellectual interests focus on organizational economics, antitrust economics, strategic management, competitive strategy, and entrepreneurship. He has been an innovator in the evolution of management education with the goal of transforming leaders who can change the world.

In 2006, Saloner led the Curriculum Review Committee that restructured the GSB’s MBA program, prioritizing a personalized approach to drive leadership transformation. Stanford GSB introduced the new curriculum in 2007, which provides courses at multiple levels and challenges each student according to their background and experience. The curriculum now includes courses in critical analytical thinking, personal leadership, cross-cultural understanding, and innovative thinking courses, alongside requirements for traditional sound management discipline.

Saloner has been a Stanford faculty member since 1990, and is recognized for his ground-breaking research on network effects, which underlie much of the economics of e-commerce and business. As a faculty member, he has taught management, strategy, entrepreneurship, and e-commerce, and as dean, he has taught courses on Strategic Leadership, Women’s Perspectives on Entrepreneurship, and Critical Analytical Thinking.

Saloner is a two-time recipient of the Business School’s Distinguished Teaching Award (1993, 2008), one of only two professors to twice receive the award. He has authored or co-authored two books including Strategic Management and Creating and Capturing Value: Perspectives and Cases on Electronic Commerce.

In 2001, he took a two-year leave from Stanford to serve as an advisor, board member, or investor with a number of Silicon Valley startups. His experience extends to applying innovation as an engine for growth in developing economies. Most recently, Saloner conceptualized and led the effort to establish the Stanford Institute for Innovation in Developing Economies, which was launched in November 2011. Known as SEED, the Institute aims to improve the lives of people in poverty on a massive scale through entrepreneurship and innovation. In July 2013, SEED established its first regional innovation hub in Ghana to provide coaching and training to entrepreneurs in West Africa.

A native of South Africa, Saloner received a BCom (Bachelor of Commerce) and MBA (with distinction) from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. He received an MS in statistics, an AM in economics, and a PhD in economics, business, and public policy from Stanford University between 1978 and 1982. He has previously taught at Harvard University and at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1982-1990), first as an assistant professor, and later as a tenured full professor in both the economics department and the Sloan School of Management.

Saloner and his family have been active in the Stanford community for more than twenty years. Stanford is now part of the Saloner “DNA”, with the family having earned a combined eight academic degrees from the university.

In addition to spending time with his close-knit family, Saloner is an avid wildlife photographer, a cycling enthusiast, and enjoys international travel.

Academic Degrees

  • PhD, Stanford University, 1982
  • MS, Stanford University, 1982
  • AM, Stanford University, 1981
  • MBA, University of Witwatersrand, 1977
  • BCom, University of Witwatersrand, 1975

Academic Appointments

  • Philip H. Knight Professor and Dean, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 2009-Current
  • Jeffrey S. Skoll Professor of Electronic Commerce, Strategic Management, and Economics, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 2000-2009
  • Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 1993-1996
  • Robert A. Magowan Professor of Economics and Strategic Management, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 1992-2000
  • Professor of Strategic Management and Economics, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 1990-1992
  • Professor, MIT Sloan School of Management, 1990
  • Visiting Associate Professor, Harvard Business School, 1989-1990
  • Associate Professor, MIT, 1987-1990
  • Sloan Fellow, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, 1987-1989
  • Visiting Assistant Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Business, 1986-1987
  • National Fellow, Hoover Institution, 1986-1987
  • Assistant Professor, MIT, 1982-1987

Awards and Honors

  • Doctor Honoris Causa, Universidad ESAN, 2013
  • MBA Distinguished Teaching Award, Stanford GSB, 2008
  • MBA Distinguished Teaching Award, Stanford GSB, 1993


Journal Articles

Garth Saloner, Joseph Farrell. RAND Journal of Economics. 1988, Vol. 19, Issue Summer, Pages 235-252.
Garth Saloner. Journal of Economic Theory. 1987, Vol. 41.
Garth Saloner. Rand Journal of Economics. 1987, Vol. 18(2), Issue Summer, Pages 165-186.
Garth Saloner, Julio Rotemberg. American Economic Review. 1987, Vol. 77, Issue December, Pages 917-926.
Garth Saloner. Economics Letters. 1986, Vol. 18(1), Pages 83-86.
Garth Saloner, Joseph Farrell. Economic Letters. 1986, Vol. 18(1), Pages 71-74.
Garth Saloner. International Journal of Industrial Organization. 1986, Vol. 4, Pages 333-345.
Garth Saloner. Journal of Labor Economics. 1985, Vol. 3(3), Issue July, Pages 255-267.


Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence New York: Wiley, 2002.
Garth Saloner, Andrea Shepard, Joel Podolny New York: Wiley, 2001.

Book Chapters

John Roberts, Garth Saloner, Robert Gibbons. Chapter 20 in The Handbook of Organizational Economics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2013, Pages 799-852.
Garth Saloner. Product Standardization as a Tool of Competitive Strategy. New York: North-Holland, 1987, Pages 1-22.
Garth Saloner. Telecommunications and Equity: Policy Research Issues. North-Holland, 1986, Pages 165-178.
Garth Saloner. The Industrial Organization of Futures Markets. Lexington Books, 1984, Pages 261-274.

Stanford Case Studies

Amanda's (A) | E326(A)
Claire Magat, Garth Saloner2009
Amanda's (B) | E326(B)
Claire Magat, Garth Saloner2009
Hand in Hand, India | E372
Annie Adams, Lyn Denend, Sarah Garrett, Whit Keuer, Garth Saloner2009
Semprae Laboratories | E351
Garth Saloner, Claire Magat2009
Shonaquip | E355
Victoria Chang, Jessica Jackley, Garth Saloner2009
Silkor Laser Medical Center | E353
Victoria Chang, Riad Dimechkie, Jessica Jackley, Garth Saloner, Carla Sayegh2009
Stella & Dot | E345
Garth Saloner, Jocelyn Hornblower2009
Ashesi University | E290
Sean Harrington, Garth Saloner2008
Circles, Lifecycle of a New Venture | E298
R. Ellis, Garth Saloner, Amanda Silverman2008
Databank | E291
Sean Harrington, Garth Saloner2008
Endeavor | E308
Sean Harrington, Garth Saloner2008
Finding the Idea, Ning | E314
Katherine Bose, Garth Saloner2008
Flexperience (Making Mother + Professional Work) | E315
Garth Saloner, Alex Tauber2008
Kiva | E288
Bethany Coates, Garth Saloner2008
Nicole Alvino & Dermalounge | E316
Jocelyn Hornblower, Garth Saloner2008
Rose Hanna (A) | E327A
Jocelyn Hornblower, Garth Saloner2008
Rose Hanna (B) | E327B
Jocelyn Hornblower, Garth Saloner2008
Equity Bank (A) | E260
Garth Saloner, Bethany Coates, Ana Garcia Azuelo, Jessica Flannery and Haydee Moreno2007
Partnership Formation, Ariat | E305
Katherine Bose, Garth Saloner2007
Sheryle Bolton (B) | E207B
Katherine Bose, Garth Saloner2007
Circles, The First 10 Years | E225
Katherine Bose, Mike Harkey, Garth Saloner2006
Fitness Anywhere | E211
R. Ellis, Garth Saloner, Alex Tauber2006
Shimano And The High-End Road Bike Industry | SM150
Victoria Chang, Garth Saloner2006
Destination-U, College Counseling on the Internet | E197
R. Ellis, Mike Harkey, Garth Saloner2005
Jo Anne Heywood (A) | E204A
Garth Saloner, Angie Strange, Alex Tauber, Amanda West2005
Jo Anne Heywood (B) | E204B
Garth Saloner, Angie Strange, Alex Tauber, Amanda West2005
Katrina Garnett | E205
Emily Melton, Garth Saloner2005
Rosemary Brooks | E206
Aisa Aiyer, Carly Irestone, Garth Saloner, Alex Tauber2005
Capital One Financial Corporation, Setting And Shaping Strategy | SM135
Victoria Chang, Garth Saloner2004
Circles | E160
Jamie Earle, Garth Saloner, Jeffrey Skoll2003
ProjectSHED (A) | E116A
Garth Saloner, Janet Feldstein2002
BabyCenter | EC11
Tyee Harpster, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence, Meredith Unruh2000
Disintermediation in the U.S. Auto Industry | EC10
Eric Marti, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
E-Commerce Building Blocks | EC6
Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence, Christopher Thomas, Elizabeth Urban2000
E-Markets 2000 | EC23
Robert Burgelman, Garth Saloner, Christopher Thomas2000 | EC9A
Katherine McIntyre, Ezra Perlman, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
HP E-Services.Solution | EC16
Garth Saloner, Michelle Moore, Cara Snyder2000
Karen Brown | EC12
Kasey Craig, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
NIKE - Channel Conflict | EC9B
Katherine McIntyre, Ezra Perlman, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
Online Auctions | EC7
Garth Saloner2000
Pricing and Branding on the Internet | EC8
Garth Saloner, Kostas Sgoutas, A. Michael Spence2000
QRS Corporation | EC2
Eric Marti, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
SAP and the Online Procurement Market | EC5
Eric Marti, Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
Tradeweave | EC14
Garth Saloner, A. Michael Spence2000
Siebel Systems, Inc. | EC1
Eric Marti, Garth Saloner, A. Micheal Spence1999
Cisco Systems: A Novel Approach to Structuring Entrepreneurial Ventures | EC15
Garth Saloner, A Michael Spence, James McJunkin, Todd Reynders1997
Apple Computer in the Portable Computer Market (B) | SM1B
Garth Saloner, Hank Chesbrough,1993
EDS Information Technology Outsourcing | SM3
Garth Saloner, Sanjeev Dheer, Brian Viard1993
Apple Computer in the Portable Computer Market (A) | SM1A
Garth Saloner, Hank Chesbrough,1992

Stanford University Affiliations

Stanford GSB

  • Advisory Council, 2009-Current
  • Chair, MBA Program Task Force, 2006
  • Director, Summer Institute for Entrepreneurship, 2005-2009
  • Director, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, 2004-2009
  • Founder and Co-Director, Center for Electronic Business and Commerce, 1999-2004
  • Area Coordinator, Economics, 2003-2006
  • Area Coordinator, Strategic Management, 1990-1999
  • Director, Research and Curriculum Development, 1993-1996

Greater Stanford University

  • Member, Stanford University Executive Cabinet, 2009-Current
  • Co-Founder, Stanford Computer Industry Project

Service to the Profession

Board of Directors

  • Destination U, 2004-2008
  • Aplia, 2001-2004
  • Synthean, Inc, 1999-2007
  • Tradeweave, Inc., 1999-2001
  • NextStage Entertainment, 1998-2002
  • Charles River Associates, 1998-2000
  • Brilliant Digital Entertainment, Inc., 1996-2003
  • Quick Response Services, Inc., 1993-2004

External Affiliations

  • Research Associate, National Bureau of Economic Research, 1991-2009
  • Steering Committee Member, NBER Program in Industrial Organization, 1990-2009
  • Standards Workshop Planning Committee, National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences, 1989-1990
  • Member, Organizing Committee, Eighteenth and Nineteenth Annual Telecommunications Policy Research Conferences, 1989-1991
  • Organizer, Conference on the Economics of Standardization, MIT, 1986

Editor or Editorial Boards

  • Editorial Board, Strategic Management Journal, 1991-1994
  • Editorial Board, Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 1989-1996
  • Associate Editor, International Journal of Industrial Organization, 1988-1996
  • Co-Editor, Rand Journal of Economics, 1988-1995
  • Associate Editor, Rand Journal of Economics,1986-1988

In the Media

Inc., December 7, 2013
More than anything, women need role models — and not just at the top, says Stanford GSB Dean Garth Saloner in a recent video interview with Inc. magazine associate editor Jill Krasny.
Bloomberg TV, August 20, 2013
Stanford GSB Dean Garth Saloner discusses innovation, entrepreneurship, and Silicon Valley with Bloomberg TV.
The Financial Times, February 28, 2013
Dean Garth Saloner and Stanford MBA students travel to Antarctica to investigate the business issues surrounding climate change.
EFMD - The Management Development Network , February 1, 2013
Stanford Graduate School of Business Dean Garth Saloner discusses why and how business schools must change if they are to serve their students and society well.

Insights by Stanford Business

July 23, 2015
Youku Tudou CEO on micro movies and other ways Chinese directors are leveraging the internet.
February 1, 2011
The Ford Motor turnaround required tough decisions and labor cooperation but CEO Alan Mulally is optimistic about the future.
October 1, 2007
James Mwangi, the head of Equity Bank of Kenya, is the central figure in a major microfinance success case.
October 1, 2007
In the inaugural Social Innovators Speaker Series talk, the actress and activist explains her work with FINCA International.
August 1, 2001
In an excerpt from their book, Garth Saloner and Michael Spence explore the ways managers can use technological innovations to add value.

School News

February 8, 2016
More than 150 unique elective courses offered this year; Offerings continually refreshed with new perspectives, lecturers and ideas.
October 6, 2015
New faculty and lecturers offer unique perspectives and experience to augment program offerings.
June 17, 2015
Annual diploma ceremony celebrates graduates degrees, certificates and awards.
March 27, 2015
Alumni couple have demonstrated commitment to finding solutions to looming energy challenges.
March 19, 2012
Jerker Johansson, MBA ’86, and his wife, Stephanie, made a generous commitment to The Dean’s Fund to help the school build on its collective achievements.
March 1, 2012
In 2012, Stanford University concluded an unprecedented five-year campaign that positioned the school to address a range of challenges in the global economy.
June 6, 2011
Two 2011 Social Innovation Fellows focus on environment and international development.
April 30, 2011
Dean Garth Saloner reflects on the generosity of our alumni and friends, and their help in building the Knight Management Center.
January 31, 2011
Structured trips provide intellectual and emotional experiences with other cultures for Stanford MBA students learning to lead in a global economy.