Robert Urstein

Robert Urstein
Contact Info


Rob Urstein is a Lecturer in Management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business where he teaches courses on innovation in higher education. An experienced academic leader, Urstein has more than 25 years of professional experience managing academic programs and teaching, advising, and coaching undergraduates, graduate students, and executives. He collaborates on research projects and serves as a governing board member of the College Transition Collaborative, which brings together pioneering social psychologists, education researchers, and higher education practitioners to create learning environments that produce more equitable higher education outcomes.

In addition to his teaching and research, Urstein is an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Entangled Ventures, and a Senior Strategist at Entangled Solutions, where he works on projects to equitably transition society to a knowledge economy.

Urstein spent more than twelve years in leadership roles at Stanford, including three years as Associate Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Dean of Freshmen, and Director of Undergraduate Advising and Research, where he was responsible for the transition of new undergraduates to Stanford; academic advising; undergraduate research programs, and academic policy and progress. At the Graduate School of Business, Urstein served for eight years as Assistant Dean, leading the PhD Program, and for two years as Managing Director of Global Innovation Programs, where he managed a portfolio of on campus and international programs focused on leadership, innovation, and entrepreneurship. He has taught MBA students since 2008. Prior to Stanford, Urstein spent ten years teaching and coaching in an independent high school, and in 2000-01 he was a Fulbright Senior Scholar in Oslo, Norway, working for the Royal Norwegian Ministry of Education. He has been at Stanford since 2004.

Academic Degrees

  • BA, History & Literature, Claremont McKenna College
  • MA and PhD, American Studies, University of Iowa

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, Stanford University, 2012-2015
  • Assistant Dean, Stanford GSB, 2004-2012
  • Fulbright Scholar, Royal Norwegian Ministry of Education, 2000-2001

Professional Experience

  • Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Entangled Ventures, 2017-Present
  • Governing Board Member, College Transition Collaborative, 2016-present


Journal Articles

David S. Yeager, Gregory M. Walton, Shannon T. Brady, Ezgi N. Akcinar, David Paunesku, Laura Keane, Donald Kamentz, Gretchen Ritter, Angela Lee Duckworth, Robert Urstein, Eric M. Gomez, Hazel Rose Markus, Geoffrey L. Cohen, Carol S. Dweck. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). May 31, 2016.


Degree Courses


This course explores the contemporary higher education industry, focusing especially on the places where disruptions of all kinds present significant opportunities and challenges for entrepreneurs, investors, and the businesses that serve this...


This course will explore the contemporary higher education industry, focusing especially on the places where disruptions of all kinds present significant opportunities and challenges for investors, entrepreneurs, and the businesses that serve...

Insights by Stanford Business

September 19, 2016
Research shows a way to close a key achievement gap.

School News

May 14, 2019
Meet three graduates of an innovative Stanford GSB program designed to create a path for women and minorities in business academia.