Saul Gass Expository Writing Award

2015 Winner(s): Martin A. Lariviere, Kellogg School of Management
Northwestern University

The Saul Gass Expository Writing Award for 2015 is awarded to Professor Martin Lariviere of Northwestern University. This award recognizes Professor Lariviere’s research on supply chain management and service operations. His work explores the impact of decentralized decision making on operational performance and design. His most significant papers include: “Contracting to Assure Supply: How to Share Demand Forecasts in a Supply Chain,” “Supply Chain Coordination with Revenue-Sharing Contracts: Strengths and Limitations,” “Selling to the Newsvendor: An Analysis of Price-Only Contracts,” and “Strategically Seeking Service: How Competition Can Generate Poisson Arrivals.” In these and many other papers, Professor Lariviere formulates parsimonious models that provide important insights. His research has been foundational, creating a prominent new area of research in operations management.

The influence of Professor Lariviere’s work has been significantly enhanced by the force and clarity of his writing. His papers provide a sense of direction and purpose as models are developed and explored. The results from the models are often dizzyingly complex, but the lucid explanations make the complex seem simple. His papers communicate clearly and precisely the intellectual contribution of his work. In each paper, Professor Lariviere carefully constructs a narrative as to why his results are surprising, insightful, and worthy of attention.

While Professor Lariviere’s journal publications have had a dramatic influence on his academic colleagues, he also had a broad impact on both academia and industry as the primary contributor to The Operations Room, a blog that focuses on topics related to operations management and operations research. Since 2009, Professor Lariviere has written over 700 posts on topics from wearable devices to port strikes to the history of elevator music. The blog has thousands of readers and subscribers through email, Twitter, and other social media. Many of Professor Lariviere’s posts link phenomena from our daily lives to fundamental concepts in operations management. Others translate complex research ideas to make them accessible for a broad audience. The writing is informative and true to scholarship while engaging and entertaining. Through the blog, Professor Lariviere has become one of our greatest ambassadors for the fields of operations management and operations research.

Purpose of the Award

This award recognizes an author whose publications in operations research and management science have set an exemplary standard of exposition. The awardee's written work, published over a period of at least ten years, should indicate (in terms of breadth of readership) an influence and accessibility enhanced by expository excellence. Criteria include the lucidity, conciseness, logic and interest of the writing at all levels, from the general organization to the details.  The author must have affected, through these publications, how something is done, studied, taught, or thought about by some group within the OR/MS community.


The written work can contain any combination of practical, theoretical and pedagogical subject matter, and may be original, synthetic or historical. The corpus as a whole must be substantial in content, not necessarily prize-worthy in itself, but not trivial.


Enough of the publications in question must have been singly authored to demonstrate the awardee’s expository skill. A team of authors writing together consistently over many years may also be considered for the award.   


The winner will receive $2,000 and a framed certificate that includes a brief citation at the 2016 INFORMS Annual Meeting.

Past Awardees

2015 Winner(s)
Martin A. Lariviere, Kellogg School of Management
Northwestern University
2014 Winner(s)
Stephen P. Boyd, Stanford University
2013 Winner(s)
Frank P. Kelly, Centre for Mathematical Science, University of Cambridge
2012 Winner(s)
Uriel G. Rothblum, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology
2011 Winner(s)
Ward Whitt, Columbia University, Industrial Engineering & Operations Research Dept.
2010 Winner(s)
Edward H. Kaplan, Yale University
2009 Winner(s)
Dimitri P. Bertsekas, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2008 Winner(s)
Henk C. Tijms, Vrije University
2007 Winner(s)
Paul H. Zipkin, Duke University, Fuqua School of Business
2006 Winner(s)
Sheldon M. Ross, University of Southern California, Dept. of Industrial & Systems Engineering
2005 Winner(s)
Lawrence M. Wein, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business
2004 Winner(s)
Frederick S. Hillier, Professor Emeritus of Operations Research, Stanford University
2003 Winner(s)
Erhan Çinlar, Princeton University, Operations Research & Financial Engineering Dept.
2002 Winner(s)
Ralph L. Keeney, USC Howard Raiffa, Harvard University, Graduate School of Business Administration
2001 Winner(s)
Arnold I. Barnett, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management
2000 Winner(s)
John D.C. Little, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1999 Winner(s)
David G. Luenberger, Management Science & Engineering Dept., Stanford University
1998 Winner(s)
J. Michael Harrison, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business
1997 Winner(s)
Saul I. Gass, University of Maryland, Robert H. Smith School of Business
1996 Winner(s)
Harvey M. Wagner, University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, Kenan-Flagler Business School
Featured Award

Application Process

Entries due July 1, 2016

Click here for instructions

About the Award/Namesake

Saul Gass

Saul Gass was the 25th President of ORSA.

Dr. Gass first served as a mathematician for the Aberdeen Bombing Mission, U. S. Air Force, and then transferred to Air Force Headquarters where he began his career in operations research with the Directorate of Management Analysis, the organization in which linear programming was first developed. For IBM, he was an Applied Science Representative, Manager of the Project Mercury Man-in-Space Program, and Manager of IBM's Federal Civil Programs. He was a member of the Science and Technology Task Force of the President's Commission on Law Enforcement. He was Director of Operations Research for CEIR, Senior Vice-President of World Systems Laboratories, and Vice-President of Mathematica. He served as a consultant to the U. S. General Accounting Office, Congressional Budget Office, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and other operations research and systems analysis organizations.


2016 Committee Chair:

Dr. Shane Henderson
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853 U.S.A.

Click here for committee information.