Sangeeta Goel was born in Calcutta, the last of 9 brothers and sisters. She did her under graduation in economics from St. Xavier's College, Calcutta. She went to London for a Masters degree in Development Studies from the London School of Economics. On her return from London, she worked on primary education issues in rural India, in Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh and Haryana. This work, though primarily research and academia oriented, brought her face to face with life and living in India for the first time - the truth and heart of millions.
She has done her PhD in Economics from Columbia University. Sangeeta is fond of languages, to which she says she responds instinctively rather than intellectually. She likes to read. She loves to talk to people, one at a time.