Modupe Akinola

Expert on the biology of leadership.


Thinkers50 Radar Class of 2022. 


Shortlisted for the 2023 Thinkers50 Talent Award.


Received Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s esteemed Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Fellowship. 


Studies stress and the biology of leadership. Examines why some thrive while others buckle under stress, offering interventions to optimize stress and achieve valued goals. Also researches workforce diversity, including the biases that affect the recruitment and retention of women and people of color in organizations.


Professor and Director of Bernstein Center for Leadership and Ethics at Columbia Business School. Award-winning teacher. Former consultant, investment banker, and social entrepreneur. Host of TED Business Podcast.


Podcast: ‘TED Business’; Online Stress Courses: ‘Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris’; Insight Timer TV: ‘Limitless with Chris Hemsworth’.

Published in premiere scientific journals including PNAS, Psychological Science, Journal of Applied Psychology, Academy of Management Journal.

Noteworthy media coverage: The New York Times, NPR, Wall Street Journal.


Media picks


“A committed Pan-African, passionate about making a difference in leadership development.”

Des Dearlove & Stuart Crainer, Thinkers50

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