Damian Beil joined Tauber Leadership as Business School Co-Director in July 2017. He works closely with the College of Engineering Co-Director Lawrence Seiford and Industry Director Raymond Muscat to keep the Tauber Institute at the forefront of Operations theory and practice.
Prior to joining Tauber Leadership, Dr. Beil was an integral part of the Tauber Institute community for several years as a faculty advisor for award-winning Tauber teams. He considers Tauber to be "one of the best things U-M has to offer students and faculty."
As Professor of Technology and Operations at the Ross School of Business, Beil teaches courses in operations management and strategic sourcing. He received the Teaching Excellence Award in 2007 and the Faculty Development Award in 2009. Beil was recognized nationally for his teaching as one of the "2015 Best 40 Under 40 Professors" by poetsandquants.com.
Beil's industry experience includes work with a wide range of influential companies – including Amazon, American Express, Avon, Boeing, BorgWarner, Coca-Cola, Conway, Corn Products, Dell, Domino’s Pizza, General Motors, Intel, Pfizer, Sodexo, Tongxin International, United Defense, and Vision Spring.
In his research, Professor Beil develops mathematical models to analyze complex problems in procurement. His work includes studies of how bargaining power affects opportunistic pricing by suppliers, and how procurement auctions should be designed to account for supplier qualification screening and quality levels. He is also interested in applications of operations management to health care and has analyzed therapy sequence scheduling for cancer patients and national organ allocation policies.
Beil has served as an Associate Editor for Management Science, Operations Research and Naval Research Logistics, and as a Senior Editor for POMS. Prior to joining Michigan, Beil received a BA in Mathematics from New College and a Ph.D. in Operations Research from M.I.T.
Questions & Answers with Tauber Institute Business Co-Director Damian Beil:
Q: What were your experiences with the Tauber Institute prior to your new leadership role?
A: I've worked with Tauber students and faculty on summer projects over the past 14 years, with companies in industries ranging from aerospace to float glass. The experiences with Tauber have been some of the most interesting and meaningful of my career - it has shaped what I teach to our students and the papers I write for fellow academics.
Q: What new developments in Operations do you find most exciting?
A: At a high level, I'm really excited by the fact that operations and supply chain management continues to be such a "hot" area in the industry. The scale and scope of what companies want to accomplish with their operations continue to grow, as do the opportunities for impact with operations thinking. As just one example in my own work, I'm currently studying how operations thinking can be used to fundamentally change the way complex services like outsourced litigation is managed.
Q: What do you consider to be the Tauber Institute’s most significant contributions to Operations education?
A: Since its inception, the Tauber program has set the bar for education in operations by bringing together UM's world-class programs in Engineering and Business. It's hard to overstate how important this integrated approach is for addressing the industry's most critical operational challenges. We see this each year in the company projects. The cumulative educational impact of the transformational experience Tauber offers shows up in the over 1200 alums who are becoming leaders and mentors in operations, the engineering and business school faculty whose teaching and research are deeply influenced by their work with Tauber (such as my own), and the companies who year after year come back to Tauber for projects.
Q: What first brought you to the University of Michigan?
A: U-M was my first job out of graduate school. I was just 26 and didn't have much experience besides research. Ross' incredible connections with companies through programs like the Tauber Institute for Global Operations were invaluable in helping me get current on industry issues and challenges and really shaped my research and teaching.
Q: What do you consider to be the highlights of your career thus far?
A: Highlights come whenever my master's students tell me about getting a job or thriving in their career based on the things they learned at UM, or when my former Doctoral students receive tenure. Those moments really matter. I've been fortunate to have several administrative roles at Ross, including launching our Master of Management Program, acting as Faculty Director of our Full-Time MBA program, and now serving as a Co-Director of the Tauber Institute for Global operations. Working with an outstanding team of colleagues and getting to see our students grow and get jobs is very gratifying.
Q: What is your most memorable classroom moment?
A: It involves a negotiation game I created for an elective class that brings out the good in people, the bad in people, and culminates in students sharing their war stories. I learn as much as my students do each time I run it.