About Srini

Prior to pursuing an academic career, I was leading a technology-based social venture in Tamil Nadu, India. My venture was focused on delivering education services to low income consumers in rural regions of Tamil Nadu. I am also the founder of a not-for-profit called "Diya", which provides supplementary education in the urban slums of Chennai, India. 

In line with my work experiences, my research interests lie in the area of marketing management in subsistence marketplaces. My work examines key theoretical issues in the empirical contexts of poverty, which have the potential to inform and advance marketing theory in general.

My research has been published in reputed academic journals such as Journal of Public Policy and Marketing, Journal of Macromarketing and Marketing Theory. I blend insights from my academic research and on-field experience as a social entrepreneur to create a rich learning experience in the classroom. I have led multiple international student trips to such countries as India and Tanzania. I am also a co-instructor for an online course on 'Subsistence Marketplaces' offered to over 9000 students across the world on a MOOC platform called coursera.

I have been a part of the Subsistence Marketplaces Initiative since august 2009 and have actively contributed to its teaching, research and dissemination activities.


Ph.D. , Marketing, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2016
MBA, Marketing, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2011
B.S., Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Anna University, 2005

Honors and Awards

SI-MBA Professor of the year award, University of Vermont, May 2020.

Dean’s Scholarship Excellence Award ($5000), University of Vermont, May 2020.

Office of Vice President of Research (OVPR) Express Grant ($3000), University of Vermont, 2016-2017.

AMA Entrepreneurial Marketing SIG/Kauffman Doctoral Dissertation Award ($3000), 2016

Sudman/Sheth Awardee for Research ($2500), University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, 2016

ACR/Sheth Foundation Dissertation Grants in the area of Public Purpose Consumer Research ($ 2500), 2015

List of instructors ranked outstanding by their students, University of Illinois, Summer 2014
American Marketing Association (AMA), Sheth Doctoral Consortium Fellow, London Business School, London, 2015

Block Grant ($2000), University of Illinois, Summer 2015

7th Annual PhD Sustainability Academy (Student participant), Western University, 2014

The Albert Haring Doctoral Symposium (Presenter), Indiana University, 2014

Marion Jemmott fellowship ($6500), Taraknath Das Foundation, South Asia Institute, Columbia University, 2014-2015

Advisor at BizBigPic, 2014

Block Grant ($1200), University of Illinois, 2013-2014

Richard D. and Anne Marie Irwin Fellowship, University of Illinois, 2013-2014

Albert Haring Symposium (discussant), Indiana University, 2013

Walter H. Stellner Doctoral Fellowship, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2011 to 2016

Dr. Avinish Chaturvedi Memorial Student Ambassador Award in Marketing, University of Illinois, 2012
Winner of the 4th Base of the Pyramid narrative competition, Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise at Cornell University, 2010-2011

Co-curator of TED licensed TEDxUIUC, College of Business, 2009-2011

Certificate for Excellence in Sustainable Management and Technology, Department of Business Administration, University of Illinois (May 2011)

Extraordinary Achievement Award Nominee, Illinois MBA, College of Business, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, April 2011

Media Coverage

"Poverty plays complex role in entrepreneurship for Indian women", www.phys.org, July 7th 2015 (Link)

"From llama Herders to Chai Wallas: New Website Will Engage the World”, by Diana Yates, Inside Illinois, May 19th 2010, (Link)

“Illuminating Change,”  by Paromita Pain, The Hindu – NXg, June 5th 2008, (Link)