Olga Davidson received her PhD in 1983 from Princeton University in Near Eastern studies. Her dissertation, The Crown-Bestower and the Iranian Book of Kings, was awarded the T. Cuyler Young prize by the Near Eastern studies department. From 1986-1991, Davidson served jointly with husband Gregory Nagy as master of Currier House at Harvard University. From 1992-1997 she was chair of Islamic and Middle Eastern studies at Brandeis University, and from 1997-2000 she served on the council of the Iranian Association of Boston.
Currently she is adjunct associate professor of comparative literature at Brandeis University where she teaches a course entitled, "The Woman's Voice in the Muslim World.” She is also on the advisory council of the department of Near Eastern studies at Princeton University. Her teaching interests include Persian and Arabic languages/literature, women's studies, Avestan, Pahlavi, Sogdian, Sanskrit, classical Greek and Latin languages/literature, comparative literature, folklore and oral poetics.
Davidson serves as chair of the board of the Ilex Foundation, sits on the boards of the Woodcock Foundation, Search for Common Ground and the American Iranian Council. She is a member of the Encyclopedia Iranica’s board of trustees, and is on the board of advisors for the series Bibliotheca Iranica: Intellectual Traditions Series.