The Department of Operations and Information Management offers Ph.D. programs in two areas: information systems and operations management. Both programs are designed to prepare individuals for careers in research and teaching at the university level.

The department’s core areas of research include both operations and information systems. Faculty members have expertise in the following areas: health care operations management, supply chain management, behavioral operations management, service operations management, operations strategy, product development, sustainability, online consumer behavior, auction and competitive bidding, e-business strategy, IT-enabled business transformation, lean work organizations, market efficiency, process design, and process improvement. Our faculty members contribute to significant advancements in the field, as evidenced by our recently published journal articles.

Academic Requirements

Ideal candidates possess a strong academic background, especially in analytical and quantitative fields. While many students have completed master's degrees or an MBA program, these are not critical.

Each Ph.D. student follows customized coursework in order to fulfill the requirement of 32 credits. This coursework includes classes in both research methodology and in the major area.

Research Methods Coursework

Working with an advisor, each student chooses a minimum of four courses (12 credits) in the area of research methodology. While students are required to develop basic research background in multiple research areas, most students ultimately specialize in the research area and methodology that best suits their skills and research interests. These courses can be drawn from inside or outside the Wisconsin School of Business. Coursework in this group may be used to fulfill the requirements for the major and minor program.

Coursework in Major Area

Coursework in the candidate’s major research area of interest is to be chosen together with the advisor. For a student entering the Ph.D. program with a master’s degree in the major area, the required coursework is estimated to take two years. Students without a relevant master's degree may take an additional semester to complete the required coursework.

Before becoming a dissertator, Ph.D students must both complete 32 credits of coursework and pass a preliminary exam. The preliminary exam includes two parts: a written exam and an oral presentation of an original research paper.

Enno Siemsen
Enno Siemsen
Ph.D. Faculty Coordinator for Operations
Sung Kim
Sung Kim
Ph.D. Faculty Coordinator for Information Systems

General Ph.D. Requirements

In addition to meeting the requirements of the specific academic department, all students must meet the general Ph.D. requirements of both the UW–Madison Graduate School and the Wisconsin School of Business.

Faculty Research Interests

Research interests:
  • Health care operations management and emergency department operations
  • Empirical methods
  • Service operations
Research interests:
  • Health care operations
  • Econometric analysis
  • Stochastic modeling
Research interests:
  • Contracts
  • Distribution systems
  • Incentives
  • Process management
  • Production planning and inventory theory
  • Supply chain management
  • Sustainable development and business
Research interests:
  • Information and its influence on economic decision-making
  • Auctions and competitive bidding
  • Procurement
  • Financial signaling
  • Pari-mutuel betting
  • Applied game theory
Research interests:
  • Electronic commerce
  • Information technology
  • Online marketing
  • Philosophical and methodological issues
Research interests:
  • Knowledge-based systems
  • Decision support systems
  • Integrated modeling systems
  • Mathematical programming
  • Stochastic optimization
  • Multiple-criteria optimization
Research interests:
  • Operations research
  • Computer models for facility location and distribution system design
  • Optimization models
Research interests:
  • Decision-making
  • Forecasting
  • New product development
  • Operations and technology management
  • Project management
  • Quality improvement
Research interests:
  • Supply chain management
  • Behavioral operations management
  • Managerial judgment and decision-making
  • Inventory management
  • Forecasting
Research interests:
  • Healthcare operations management
  • Continuous improvement in manufacturing and healthcare
  • Linking operational and financial performance
  • Management of organizational change

Connect with Current Students

We encourage you to contact our doctoral students in operations and information management to hear their perspectives on the Wisconsin Ph.D. Program.

View current student profiles

See Our Placement Results

Graduates of our Ph.D. specialization in operations and information management have accepted tenure-track positions at top research universities.

View recent placements