Robert F. Bruner

Dean and Charles C. Abbott Professor of Business Administration
University of Virginia Darden School of Business

Bob Bruner is the eighth dean of the University of Virginia Darden School of Business. A faculty member since 1982 and winner of leading teaching awards at the University of Virginia and within the Commonwealth of Virginia, he teaches and conducts research in finance and management.

Bruner is a leader of innovations in management education at Darden and globally. He has guided two curriculum design efforts at Darden in which he promoted Darden’s hallmark approach: instruction integrated across fields, an enterprise point of view of the leader and general manager, and high-engagement discussion. He has taught students in the MBA and MBA for Executives formats, and doctoral students. He has instructed practitioners in executive education courses around the world and is co-author of Case Studies in Finance, now in its sixth edition.

Bruner has actively advanced Darden and the field of management education in new frontiers such as entrepreneurship, innovation, globalization and diversity. Prior to his appointment as dean in August 2005, Bruner served as the founding Executive Director of Darden’s Batten Institute, which focuses on entrepreneurship and innovation. There, he expanded Darden’s Business Incubator, established a Fellows Program, promoted research, and encouraged the creation of new courses, including his “Patents and Corporate Valuation” course.

In 2011, Bruner led a global task force of Deans for the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business that produced a comprehensive review of global management education. The resulting book-length report, The Globalization of Management Education, urged educational leaders to rise to the challenges of globalization.

As a financial economist, Bruner is best known for his research on mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and financial panics. His books, Deals from Hell and Applied Mergers and Acquisitions, have helped numerous practitioners and students toward successful transactions. His book published in 2007, The Panic of 1907: Lessons Learned from the Market’s Perfect Storm, with Sean D. Carr, attracted wide attention for its discussion of the underpinnings of financial crises.

A native of Chicago, Bruner received a B.A. from Yale University in 1971 and the MBA and DBA degrees from Harvard University in 1974 and 1982, respectively. Bruner served as a loan officer and investment analyst for First Chicago Corporation from 1974 to 1977. He served as a visiting professor at INSEAD, IESE and Columbia University business schools. Bruner and his wife, Bobbie, have two sons.

Bruner is one of the world’s few blogging business school deans. He comments on life, business and current events in his popular “Dean’s Blog.”  He also “tweets” regularly on his Twitter account and is often cited in the media around the world. In 2012, Poets & Quants and CNNMoney/Fortune named him “Dean of the Year.” For more information and copies of his papers and essays, visit his website.

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