Ramesh Narayan received his Ph.D. in 1979 from Bangalore University, India. After spending a few years as a postdoctoral scientist at the Raman Research Institute, Bangalore, he went to California Institute of Technology in 1983, first as a postdoctoral fellow and later as a senior research fellow. He joined the faculty of the University of Arizona in 1985 and moved to Harvard University as a professor of astronomy in 1991. He is currently the Thomas Dudley Cabot Professor of the Natural Sciences at Harvard.
Narayan works on a broad range of topics in theoretical astrophysics, including accretion disks, black holes, gamma-ray bursts, gravitational lensing, image processing, neutron stars and scattering theory. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of London, a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, and a Fellow of the World Academy of Sciences.