Morris A. Cohen


Dr. Morris A. Cohen is the Panasonic Professor of Manufacturing and Logistics in the Operations Information and Decisions Department of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania Science.  He is also Co-Director of Wharton’s Fishman-Davidson Center for Service and Operations Management.  Until recently Morris was founder and chair of the board of MCA Solutions, a software company specializing in after-sales logistics planning systems, which recently merged with PTC, a leading provider of product design and service life cycle management decision support systems.  He also has been a member of the Board of Directors of Vlasic Foods International, Inc. and the Engineering Advisory Committee of the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Cohen’s research interests include analysis of the current drivers of global supply chain sourcing strategy and product-service system modeling with a focus on performance based incentives for servicization as well as advanced optimization tools for supply chain resource planning. His recent application work includes development of strategic and tactical planning systems for service supply chains in industries such as aerospace & defense, consumer electronics, health care technology, oil and gas, automobile, semiconductor equipment, computers, and telecommunications. His pioneering research on the management of after-sales service inventory systems has been implemented around the world in a wide range of industries. He also has been a consultant to more than 50 multinational companies in the computer, semiconductor, automobile, food, military logistics, process equipment, pharmaceutical, capital equipment leasing, and industrial paper/plastics industries.

Dr. Cohen’s research career began with a focus on perishable inventory models. Throughout his career he has focused on ensuring that theoretical model-based research is linked with application in practice. His perishable inventory models were grounded in his work with the management of blood banks. He has made significant contributions in multi-echelon inventory theory, with special emphasis on service parts management. A major project with IBM’s service parts logistics system (joint with the late Paul Kleindorfer and his student Hau Lee) led to numerous research publications, multiple research projects funded by agencies such as NSF and produced several PhD theses. The impact of this project on IBM was recognized as a finalist in the Edelman Prize for Best Practice in Operations Research in 1989.

The software developed by MCA, under the direction of Dr. Cohen has been used by a number of companies, including Airbus, Bobst Group, Boeing, Bombardier, Brocade, Coca Cola, Cymer, Dassault, KLA Tencor, Lam Research, Lockheed Martin, Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP), Pratt and Whitney, Roche, Rockwell Collins, Sysmex, Tellabs, Unisys, and U.S. Navy.  The total value of inventory that was managed by the MCA software was over one hundred billion dollars (U.S, Navy alone had 25 Billion in parts inventory).   Inventory reductions were as high as 50% but in general were on the order of 10% to 25%.  This saving was accompanied by significant operating cost reductions and the maintenance or improvement of the level of customer service as measured by availability related metrics.

Dr. Cohen is one of the academic leaders that advanced the theory and practice of service supply chain management. He started with the development of advanced optimization tools for spare parts inventory control and the design of service logistics systems.  His work on performance-based incentives for servicization was grounded both in theory as well as extensive empirical testing. His research led to applications that have helped many industrial enterprises to manage their service supply chains in a more cost effective manner. It has also provided managerial insights on how performance-based contracts should be developed and implemented. As operations have become more globalized, Dr. Cohen also did foundational work related to the management of global operations networks. His work on resource deployment of global manufacturing and distribution network for Apple Computer won a First Prize from the Lauder Institute and the Institute of Management Science, for Best Advances in the Theory and Practice of International Management Science. Recognizing exchange rate uncertainties, he worked with his PhD students to incorporate the notion of operational (real) options in creating flexibility in a global manufacturing network. In recent years, he is also working on global manufacturing network design of multi-national enterprises, and in particular, has conducted empirical research manufacturing sourcing concerning the evolution of the “reshoring” of operations by companies based in the US, Europe, Japan, China and India.

Dr. Cohen has been a visiting faculty member at the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore, the Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade, the Technion in Israel, Kobe University in Japan, the Interdisciplinary University in Israel, Stanford University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  He also has served as an editor for a variety of journals; including Operations Research, Journal of Operations Management, Journal of Manufacturing and Operations Management, Naval Research Logistics, Supply Chain Management Review, the Journal of Production and Operations Management, Service Science and the Journal of Manufacturing and Service Operations Management.  He is a Fellow of the Institute for Operations Research and Management Science, and a Senior Fellow of the Manufacturing and Service Operations Management Society.  He is a recipient of the 2015 Wharton School Teaching Commitment and Curricular Innovation Award, the 2007 Tibbets Award from the National Science Foundation and the 2001 Institute of Industrial Engineers Award for the best paper published in IIE Transactions in 1999.  He also has been a plenary speaker at the Japanese Operations Management and Strategy Association (2013), the German Operations Research Society (2008) and the Production and Operations Management Society (2007).  Dr. Cohen holds a B.A.Sc. in Engineering Sciences from the University of Toronto, as well as an M.S. in Industrial Engineering and a Ph.D. in Operations Research from Northwestern University.


Marshall L. Fisher

fisher Marshall L. Fisher is the UPS Professor of Operations and Information Management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and co-director of the Fishman-Davidson Center for Service and Operations Management. Dr. Fisher co-founded 4R Systems, Inc., in 1999 and serves as its Chairman. He joined the Boston Manufacturing and Distribution Sales office of IBM. After teaching assignments at the University of Chicago and Cornell University, Dr. Fisher joined the faculty of the Wharton School in 1975.

His pioneering research in logistics and supply chain coordination in the 30-plus years he has been at the Wharton School has been implemented by many companies and recognized by numerous awards. In the late 1970’s, Dr. Fisher began to address the problems faced by private truck fleet operators as they endeavored to deliver their products with increased efficiency and a high level of service. This research led to both theoretical breakthroughs and successful implementations at several companies. In 1981, he co-founded Distribution Analysis, Research and Technology, Inc., a consulting company that provided optimization software and strategy consulting, based on this research, to major clients such as Frito Lay, Exxon and Anheuser Busch. He served as the Chairman of the board of directors of Distribution Analysis, Research and Technology, Inc., until 1990. In 1990, Dr. Fisher turned his attention to supply chain coordination, focusing particularly on environments with rapid introduction of new products and a high degree of demand uncertainty. In 1994, Dr. Fisher was elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering in recognition of his contributions to the use of mathematical analysis to improve supply chain performance in companies.

He also served as president of the Institute of Management Science during 1988 and 1989 and as departmental editor of Management Science from 1979 to 1983. He serves as the Chairman of the Board of 4R Systems, Inc. Dr. Fisher is a recipient of the 1977 Lanchester prize for the best paper in operations research in that year, the 1983 Edelman Prize from the Institute of Management Science for development of a large-scale logistics planning model for a major industrial gas firm, the E. Grosvenor Plowman Award from the Council of Logistics Management for contributions to logistics, and the 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998 and 1999 Wharton School MBA Core Curriculum Cluster Award for teaching excellence. He has been a consultant to many Fortune 500 companies, including Ahold, Air Products and Chemicals, BMG, Campbell Soup, Dupont, Exxon, Frito Lay, IBM, Scott Paper and Spiegel, Inc. In 1965, Dr. Fisher earned an SB in Electrical Engineering from MIT. He earned an MBA and a PhD in operations research from MIT.