Rodney Parker studies dynamic, stochastic operational systems under centralized and competitive control, frequently with production capacity limits; inventory theory under stochastic demand in single-installations and multi-echelon supply chains; market entry and deterrence strategies; and pricing decisions in conjunction with operational considerations. His interest in capacity limits, inventory control, and coordination is driven by the fact that these elements result in significant and enduring operational costs for many firms. He also is interested in industrial organization, the marketing-operations interface, and health care (operational and clinical systems). He has taught at the Yale School of Management, the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University, the University of Washington Business School, and the University of Michigan Business School. Parker also has held positions on the IBM Research staff and General Motors Corporation's advanced engineering staff, and practiced as an engineer with BHP Steel.
"My experience at General Motors, IBM, and BHP has highlighted the importance of conveying practical and relevant problems clearly and succinctly. Identifying relevant and important problems for my research derived from practice is likewise true for choosing topics to teach in class."
Parker's published works include "Optimal Policies for a Capacitated Two-Echelon Inventory System" in Operations Research, "Inventory Management Under Market Size Dynamics" in Management Science, "Managing a Non-Cooperative Supply Chain with Limited Capacity" in Operations Research, "On Hospice Operations Under Medicare Reimbursement Policies" in Management Science, and "Manufacturing Flexibility: Measures and Relationship" in the European Journal of Operational Research.
Parker received two Meritorious Service Awards for Operations Research, an honorable mention for the George and Marion Plossl Fellowship for best doctoral dissertation proposal, and the Gerald and Lillian Dykstra Fellowship for Teaching and Academic Excellence. He has been invited to speak at the Kellogg Operations Workshop, the Multi-Echelon Inventory Conference, and the Competition with Delays Conference. He has been a session chair and speaker at various INFORMS conferences, convener for the Yale Operations Seminar Series, and an ad hoc referee for Operations Research, Management Science, Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, and other journals.
At the University of Melbourne in Australia, Parker earned a bachelor's degree with honors in industrial engineering in 1990 and a master's degree in manufacturing management in 1994. He earned a PhD in business administration (operations management) from the University of Michigan in 2002 with his dissertation, "Optimal Production and Inventory Policies in Capacitated Supply Chains under Various Ownership Structures." Parker joined the Chicago Booth faculty in 2008.
Parker's interests include Taekwondo, Hapkido, and beer.
2013 - 2014 Course Schedule
||Operations Management: Business Process Fundamentals
Taekwondo, Hapkido, beer.
Capacity analysis; inventory theory; supply chain management; stochastic dynamic programming; Markov games; healthcare operations.
With Baris Ata, Brad Killaly, and Tava Olsen, "On Hospice Operations under Medicare Reimbursement Policies," Management Science (2013).
With Roman Kapuscinski, "Managing a Non-Cooperative Supply Chain with Limited Capacity," Operations Research (2011).
With Tava Olsen, "Inventory Management Under Market Size Dynamics," Management Science (2008).
With Roman Kapuscinski, "Optimal Policies for a Capacitated Two-Echelon Inventory System," Operations Research (2004).
With Andrew Wirth, "Manufacturing Flexibility: Measures and Relationships," European Journal of Operational Research (1999).
For a listing of research publications please visit
’s university library listing