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Susan Lu

Susan Lu

Gerald Lyles Rising Star Associate Professor of Management
Supply Chain and Operations Management


Ph.D., Northwestern University (MEDS)
M. A., Beijing University, China
B. A., Beijing University, China


     Dr. Susan F. Lu is the Gerald Lyles Rising Star Associate Professor of Management at the Krannert School of Management, Purdue University. She received her PhD from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. She is also an affiliated faculty of healthcare engineering at the Regenstrief Center for Healthcare Engineering.

    Her research centers on healthcare operations and analytics, with an emphasis on nursing home operations and cardiac care delivery. Applying both empirical and machine learning methodologies, she investigates the operational drivers of healthcare delivery performance to understand the impact of public policies and technological innovations on the management of healthcare operations. She is also specialized in the innovation research. Recently, she starts a new research line along service operations.

       Dr. Lu has completed 30 research papers, with 23 being published and 7 being under review/revision. Many of these papers appeared in leading management and economics journals such as Science, Management Science, POMS, Review of Economics and Statistics and Journal of Health Economics. She received the best paper award from the ASHE in 2008, which is one of the most prestigious awards in the community of health economists and is given to a single-authored paper every other year. In 2014, she received the Early Career Investigator from the National Institute of Health (NIH-HMORN) conference. In 2015, her paper about health IT received the WHITE best paper award, the most prestigious award in the field of health IT. In 2016, her paper about mandatory overtime laws was a finalist for the Pierskalla award by INFORMS Health Applications Society. In 2018, her work on treatments of heart attack was selected as a Best Abstract of the CRT 2018 Cardiovascular Research Technology Conference, which is one of the world's leading interventional cardiology conferences and is attended by more than 3,000 doctors. In 2019, her paper on telemedicine won the best paper award in the Hawaii International Conference on System Science.

         Dr. Lu's work has gained considerable attention in the media. One of her work was selected by Nature News for annual important discoveries in 2013. One work collaborating with a group of interdisciplinary researchers has been endorsed by the world-known blog Freakonomics. One work combining operations management into policy analysis is recommended by a healthcare media Healthcare Value Hub. Another work on solving shortage of donated blood is recognized by the Nobel Prize Laureate Al Roth's blog - Market Designer. Her paper which applies machine learning based techniques into empirical research appeared in the NBER Digest and Vox. During the COVID-19 period, her work about legal issues on nursing home negligence appeared at Barron's.

         Currently, she is a department editor for the health operations and service sector at the Decision Science Journal, a senior editor for the healthcare management track at the Production and Operations Management Journal (POMS) and an associate editor for the Naval Research Logistics (NRL).          



Journal Articles

  • Lu, L.X. and S.F. Lu (2018). Distance, Quality or Relationship? Interhospital Transfer of Heart Attack Patients. Production & Operations Management, vol. 27 (12), 2251-2269.

Forthcoming Publications

  • Susan Lu, Ginger Jin, Ben Jones and Brian Uzzi (2018). The Reverse Matthew Effect: Consequences of Retraction in Scientific Teams. Review of Economics and Statistics,
  • Robot Nurse

    Does Technology Replace Nurses? Not necessarily...

    Nurses have many duties, but none is more important than providing bedside care to patients. A research study co-authored by Susan F. Lu, associate professor of management in Purdue's Krannert School of Management, shows some nurses may lose their jobs when automation arrives at their workplaces. But the reverse may happen at other healthcare facilities: new technology may spark the hiring of more nurses.

    Full story: Does Technology Replace Nurses? Not necessarily...

  • Good Medicine

    Looking for a high-caliber surgeon may be easier than previously thought. Critics of online rating platforms have stated that online physicians’ ratings are nothing more than a popularity contest, but a new study by Susan Lu, a professor at the Purdue University Krannert School of Management, suggests that the time-honored word-of-mouth method for finding quality health care may hold up after all.

  • Emergency room entrance sign

    New research finds utilizing telemedicine in the ER can reduce wait times and patient length of stay

    Telemedicine has become more common given the current global pandemic. COVID-19 has limited doctor’s office and hospital visits to ensure safety for everyone. But rather than diminish the quality of care, new research in the INFORMS journal Information Systems Research coauthored by Purdue’s Susan Lu finds that increasing wider use of telemedicine in the emergency room (ER) can yield positive results for patients and providers alike.

    Full story: New research finds utilizing telemedicine in the ER can reduce wait times and patient length of stay

  • nursing facility
    Nursing home industry asks for immunity from COVID-19 crisis
    As Covdi-19 deaths and cases escalate, legislators wrestle with the issue of legal immunity for nursing homes, which house some of the most vulnerable patients. At the request of the senior-care industry, more than 20 states have passed new laws to shield senior-care facilities from coronavirus-related litigation or protected them through executive orders. Krannert faculty expert Susan Lu comments on the issue.
  • Man in wheelchair looking out nursing home window
    Malpractice laws may shield nursing homes from liability during Covid-19 pandemic
    As nursing homes continue to emerge as Covid-19 hot spots, allegations of negligence are likely to increase among residents, their families and advocacy groups, according to Barron's. However, a study co-authored by Susan Lu, Gerald Lyles Rising Star Associate Professor of Management at Purdue's Krannert School, suggests that malpractice laws in many states allowing nursing homes to shield their assets could also decrease potential settlements resulting from the pandemic.
  • stock image
    The case for economics—by the numbers
    A new study examines 140,000 economics papers published from 1970 to 2015, tallying the “extramural” citations that economics papers received in 16 other academic fields, including sociology, medicine, and public health. A paper co-authored by associate professor Susan Feng Lu appears in the March issue of the Journal of Economic Literature.
  • illustration of project exploding by Michael Meier
    Who Gets Blamed When a Group Project Goes Wrong?
    Consequences stick to some team members more than others, according to a new study of retracted academic papers based on research co-authored by Krannert Professor Susan Feng Lu. The researchers looked at retracted academic articles with multiple authors and compared how frequently each author continued to be cited by fellow scholars following the retraction. Crunching the numbers, they found that the more junior members of the team saw a substantial decline in citations of their work, while the more eminent members experienced little or no change.
  • money falling
    Three-Day Stay Rule Generates Up to $447M in Extra Medicare Spending
    The three-day hospital stay rule required for Medicare to cover subsequent skilled nursing facility stays may have generated millions in extra payments to SNFs, a new working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research suggests.
  • Study by Krannert prof Susan Lu shows cardiac surgeons’ online ratings prove reliable
    Looking for a high-caliber surgeon may be easier than previously thought. Critics of online rating platforms have stated that online physicians’ ratings are nothing more than a popularity contest, based on the interpersonal encounter a patient has with their doctor, rather than on the doctor’s attentiveness to current best practices. Even though the system has been met with skepticism, a new study suggests that the time-honored word-of-mouth method for finding quality health care may hold up after all.
  • Economics gets out more often: Using extramural citations to assess economic scholarship
    Economics, and economists, are often accused of insularity and hubris, and of talking primarily to themselves in their research. This column, coauthored by Krannert's Susan Lu, uses a recent analysis of citations to and from other disciplines to show that this is no longer the case.
  • illustration of hospital room
    Checking the pulse on health-care staffing
    Working long hours takes a toll. It also can be counterproductive and is commonly linked to more stress and errors.
  • Scientific Reports
    Doing the right thing: Scientists reward authors who report their own errors, says study
    We’ve always like to highlight cases in which scientists do the right thing and retract problematic papers themselves, rather than being forced to by editors and publishers.

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