Operations, Information and Decisions, PhD

Wharton’s program in Operations, Information and Decisions emphasizes research on real management problems and maintains a balance between theory and implementation.  The faculty trains scholars in decision making, information and operations/operations research.

Our faculty leads in the development and application of an innovative blend of analytical and empirical approaches to important problems facing the private and public sectors, including:

  • supply chain management;
  • service delivery systems;
  • product development and innovation processes;
  • decision support systems;
  • information-based strategy;
  • systems development and implementation;
  • risk and environmental management; and
  • behavioral approaches to individual and managerial decision making.

Our PhD program provides a unique mix of behavioral, economic, statistical and analytical training to its students, and its strength is reflected in our students’ record of placement and achievement.

3 Areas of Specialization

Decision Making (DM)

What factors influence human judgment and decision-making? Why and when are people prone to judgement errors and biases? What kinds of interventions will help people make better decisions, or improve human welfare? Our interdisciplinary Decision-Making PhD program focuses on training students to conduct and publish academic research that helps to answer these important questions. Along the way, students receive rigorous quantitative/statistical training, and acquire a deep understanding of the literature on judgment and decision-making, significant exposure to the fields of psychology, economics, organizational behavior, and marketing.

Information Systems (IS)

The IS track covers a broad range of research interests. Students interested in information and decision technology (IDT) focuses on the analytical and information technology-based methods for managing complex organizations. Those interested in information strategy and economics (ISE) focus on understanding the strategic aspects of information and information management.

Operations Management / Operations Research (OM / OR)

OM/OR focuses on the processes that define an organization’s outputs, as well as the methods commonly used to analyze these processes. Students specializing in OM are interested in a wide range of functions and organizational types, including operations strategy, product design, process design, technology management, capacity planning, inventory control, supply chain management and service system planning. Students interested in OR focus more on the application of mathematical models to these areas.

View the University’s Academic Requirements for PhD Degrees.

The total course units required for graduation is 16.

Core Requirement
Operations, Information and Decisions
OIDD 900Foundations of Decision Processes1
OIDD 940Operations Management1
OIDD 955Research Seminar in Information Systems1
Select two STAT course units2
Course Requirement for Each Area of Specialization
Select one of the following areas:2-5
Decision Process (DP)
Microeconomic Theory
Game Theory and Applications.
Information Systems (IS)
Select one of the following:
Microeconomic Theory
and Game Theory and Applications.
Microeconomic Theory I
and Macroeconomic Theory I
Operations Management/Operations Research (OM/OR)
Concepts of Math Programming
Stochastic Models
Distribution Systems Seminar
Select one of the following:
Microeconomic Theory
and Game Theory and Applications.
Microeconomic Theory I
and Macroeconomic Theory I
Electives for all areas
OIDD 912Introduction to Optimization0.5
OIDD 913Advanced Linear Programming1
OIDD 914Advanced Non-Linear Programming1
OIDD 916Advanced Integer Programming1
OIDD 931Stochastic Processes ll0.5
OIDD 932Queuing Theory0.5
OIDD 934Dynamic Programming and Stochastic Models0.5
MGMT 953Seminar on Research Methods1
Select one or more from the following:1-5
Numerical Methods in Economics
Econometrics I: Fundamentals
Econometrics II: Methods & Models
Econometrics III: Advanced Techniques of Cross-Section Econometrics
Econometrics IV: Advanced Techniques of Time-Series Econometrics
Total Course Units14-21

The degree and major requirements displayed are intended as a guide for students entering in the Fall of 2018 and later. Students should consult with their academic program regarding final certifications and requirements for graduation.