A strong infusion of economic theory is the distinguishing feature of the Kellogg School’s Operations Management Doctoral Program. This approach reflects the faculty’s belief that an economics-based study of operations management is both practically important and most appropriate for an academic career at a business school. The operations group undertakes research and provides instruction on managerial decision-making through quantitative, economic modeling of operations functions in firms. Research topics cover all levels of managerial decision-making, from systems design and technology choices to day-to-day scheduling and performance measurement.
A sample of current research interests of the Kellogg Operations Management faculty includes distribution and supply chain management, capacity and production planning, control of processing networks, revenue management, and contracting and mechanism design. The research problems are studied primarily through descriptive or normative mathematical models that build on modern economic paradigms. Models are analyzed using tools from optimization, game theory, probability and statistics; the group is also active in advancing these underlying methodologies. Field studies and empirical analyses are conducted to test those models and to guide further theoretical work.
The doctoral program emphasizes dissertation research. Formal coursework and other requirements provide a foundation for the student to undertake original and creative research in an area selected in consultation with a thesis adviser.
The structure of the program permits great flexibility, allowing students to customize curricula to their own research interests. The program is intended for students interested in academic careers and who have strong training in relevant mathematical methods and models.