Books by JA Van Mieghem

Operations Strategy: Principles and Practice
Managing Business Process Flows: Principles of Operations Management

Operations Strategy: Practices and Principles provides a unified framework for operations strategy.  The book shows how to tailor the operational system to maximize value and competitive advantage. Conceptual thinking and financial optimization yield guidelines for implementation.  This dual emphasis on principles and practice is reflected by analytical models that are illustrated with detailed examples and a dozen case studies of real business situations.

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Managing Business Process Flows Cover

Managing Business Process Flows: Principles of Operations Management (2012, 3rd ed.)

Written By:
Raví Anupindi, University of Michigan
Sunil Chopra, Northwestern University
Sudhakar Deshmukh, Northwestern University
Jan A. Van Mieghem, Northwestern University
Eitan Zemel, New York University

Publisher: Prentice Hall, Pearson Education
Copyright: 2012

Front matter and table of contents

Book support website

Managing Business Process Flows Cover

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More on Operations Strategy: Principles and Practice

THE OBJECTIVE OF THIS OPERATIONS STRATEGY BOOK is to convey how operations strategy can increase value by tailoring a set of core principles to a specific business practice.


Operations strategy is as much art (hence the cover) as it is science (hence the content). Designing and implementing a successful operations strategy requires judgment, experience, creativity, and luck, all of which cannot be taught. What can be taught, however, are the concepts, principles, and tools to help the reader in that process---and therein lies the purpose of this book.
“Principles and practice” is the guiding motto throughout this book. Each chapter opens with a description of how a real company practices some aspect of operations strategy and then reviews the concepts behind that practice. Tools are provided to analyze the concepts, distill their principles, and suggest guidelines for implementation and improvement. Each chapter closes with a mini-case to explore how one would apply the principles and tools in practice. The book ends with a set of “full-blown” cases (of the Harvard type) that serve to integrate the chapters and emphasize their relevance to practice.


  • This book presents a novel structured approach of using analysis to build intuition in operations strategy and reveal improvement levers within a coherent framework.
  • The dual emphasis on principles and practice is reflected by analytical models that are illustrated with detailed examples and a dozen case studies of real business situations. Throughout the book, financial value is our yardstick and our guide to assess and improve operations strategy.
  • When appropriate, state-of-the-art research findings are integrated in the discussion. For example, chapter 5 uses newsvendor network analysis and simulation-based optimization to value network flexibility; chapters 6 & 9 discuss operational hedging in global networks and offshoring; chapter 7 examines structured sourcing contracts to balance incentives and risk; chapter 8 applies revenue management techniques to capacity allocation and sourcing, and chapter 10 links operational improvement to innovation and competition.
  • This book addresses questions of a more strategic nature than those covered in a core operations course or in more specialized electives in service or supply chain management, but of a more operational level than a competitive strategy class. Nevertheless, all concepts are explained “from scratch” to make the book self-standing without prerequisites.
  • To increase accessibility, most analysis is described in words and is exhibited with minimal notation and mathematics. For example, equations are stated only if they capture a relationship better than words alone can.
  • To increase usefulness and illustrate implementation, a particular example of each analysis is worked out in a spreadsheet (all spreadsheets can be downloaded from More advanced analysis or spreadsheet implementations are relegated to appendices for those who are interested.


"This book provides a new pedagogical foundation for courses in Operations Strategy, by developing key concepts through analytical models and intuition within a coherent framework. Professor van Mieghem seemlessly integrates basic knowledge in the area with the latest academic research, and his own business cases.  The result is a truly outstanding book that chronicles the frontier of thought in the area."

Professor Dan Adelman
The University of Chicago Graduate School of Business

“This textbook provides a seminal contribution to the teaching of operations strategy in the MBA curriculum. Thoughtful discussions of fundamental strategic choices , facing the twenty first century global enterprise, are artfully combined with insightful analytical models.” 

Professor Awi Federgruen
Graduate School of Business, Columbia University

“This is an impressive book that provides a totally new perspective on operations strategy and how to teach it. The author Jan Van Mieghem does a marvelous job at developing a model-based framework for understanding operations strategy; the book draws heavily on operations management research to extract principles for operations strategy and then demonstrates how these principles guide and apply to practice through illuminating real-world examples and cases. This is an outstanding contribution for our community and our students.”

Professor Stephen C. Graves
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

"Van Mieghem's book shows us forcefully and insightfully how companies can structure their operations strategy to build overall business values.  It is such a beautiful and complete treatment that it is a book for all operations managers and students, as well as for practitioners in all functional areas."

Professor Hau Lee
Graduate School of Business, Stanford University

“Many firms adapt product strategy to changing markets but keep operational processes unchanged. This book provides a novel, integrated, yet easily accessible approach to link operations with the strategic view of the CEO. Highly recommended.” 

Professor Nils Rudi

Operations Strategy does an excellent job in providing a non-overwhelming description of the underlying theory and then illustrating it with case studies and examples.  The book contains many fascinating topics which are simply not covered elsewhere: capacity timing, capacity flexibility and operational hedging, to name just a few.  Students, practitioners and academics alike will appreciate the easy-going approach of the book and a wealth of managerial insights that it offers.”

Professor Serguei Netessine
The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

“Insightful and fun! Van Mieghem has done a masterful job of covering the important issues in operations strategy in a structured and engaging manner. This book introduces each topic in a separate chapter with a current example from a well-known company or industry, and wraps up each chapter with a more detailed case study after reviewing the relevant concepts in depth. Any instructor who plans to teach a course on operations strategy, should consider using this book as the text.”

Professor Ananth Raman
Harvard Business School


Books by my brother: Piet Van Mieghem