You are here

Steve Ciesinski

Steve   Ciesinski
Steve Ciesinski
Lecturer in Management

Teaching Statement

Stephen Ciesinski is a Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business where he teaches Creating High Potential Ventures in Developing Economies. Steve is a believer that innovation drives job creation, economic growth and societal good. His role and responsibilities at SRI International, and his experiences as an executive, investor, advisor, and board member of numerous early stage ventures in a variety of industries, provide him with a unique perspective on entrepreneurial practices in the U.S. and in countries outside the U.S. As a passionate advocate of team learning, he believes that his students will gain from valuable interactions with fellow students, mentors, consultants and other professionals as part of the coursework, while having a truly enjoyable experience.


Stephen Ciesinski is a corporate officer with SRI International, and is Vice President of Strategic Business Development. He has overall responsibility for SRI’s commercial business development, international operations, innovation programs, corporate energy and industrial sector initiatives, strategic marketing and other corporate programs.

Steve’s professional experience includes a number of industries and businesses: consumer products, semiconductor capital equipment, telecommunications, mobile/wireless, applications software, Web 2.0, open source, medical devices, and many others. As a corporate officer, board member, advisor and investor, he has participated in or managed numerous strategic events, including new business formation, major product launches, private financings, IPOs, M&A transactions and leveraged buy-outs.

Over the course of his career Steve has held executive management positions with Applied Materials, the global manufacturer of semiconductor capital equipment; Octel Communications, the worldwide leader in voice-messaging products; Resumix, Inc., the inventor of Web-based personnel recruiting applications; and Laszlo Systems, a pioneer in Web 2.0 software and provider of complex Internet applications to Global 2000 and telecommunications service operators. He started his career at Procter & Gamble, was a consultant with Booz, Allen & Hamilton, and also served as a venture partner with Earlybird Ventures.

Steve is past Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Union College and is a lifetime trustee. He is also Chairman of The President’s Cabinet at California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly), and a member of two advisory boards at Stanford University.

Steve is an active angel investor, and assists several Silicon Valley-based private companies as advisor and board member.

He is a graduate of Union College with a double major in Electrical Engineering and Modern Languages, and received an MBA from Stanford University.

Steve resides in Los Altos Hills, California with his wife and two sons. They are founders of the Kalele Foundation, dedicated to providing character and self-esteem development experiences for disadvantaged children.

Courses Taught

Degree Courses


As technology-driven ventures are having more and more impact, entrepreneurial ecosystems have been developing in recent years around the developing world. Following the lead of Silicon Valley, the most developed and sophisticated ecosystem of...


This course addresses the distinctive challenges and opportunities of launching high-potential new ventures in developing economies. Developing economies are attractive targets for entrepreneurs because many are just starting to move up the...

This entrepreneurship course is designed to teach students the basic processes and tasks required to construct a business plan en route to the creation of a new venture. nnThe course is designed not only for students with immediate...


This course addresses the distinctive challenges and opportunities of launching high-potential new ventures in developing economies. Developing economies are attractive targets for entrepreneurs because many of these markets are just starting to...


The creation of a business plan is a useful process for entrepreneurs to evaluate and think through a business concept. The business plan is also a standard tool to present the business to investors when seeking funding. Business plans are as...

Stanford Case Studies

A Note on Human Resources in Developing Economies | E497
Yin Li, Howard Rosen, Stephen Ciesinski2014

Stanford University Affiliations

Stanford GSB

  • Affiliation commas wrapper

    Faculty, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies

School News

September 1, 2010
A five-day MBA course on putting together a business plan took place in an online environment as part of a distance-learning experiment.