Friday, August 30, 2019
Management Fall Seminar Series 2019
The Sustainability Research and Teaching Committee will host guest speaker L. Beril Toktay.
Location: Krannert Center 124
Date/Time: August 30, 2019, 9:00 – 10:00 am
Host: Sustainability Research and Teaching Committee
Speaker: L. Beril Toktay, Brady Family Chair in Management
Faculty Director, Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business, Georgia Tech
Title: A Perspective on Sustainable Operations
Abstract: Dr. Toktay will talk about the range of opportunities for our community to define a
comprehensive research and teaching agenda in sustainable operations. I will combine
this overview with a recent publication titled “Truthful Mechanisms for Medical Surplus
Allocation.” In this paper, we analyze a resource allocation problem faced by Medical
Surplus Recovery Organizations (MSROs) that recover medical surplus products to fulfill
the needs of under- served healthcare facilities in developing countries. Due to the uncertain,
uncontrollable supply and limited information about recipient needs, delivering the right product
to the right recipient in MSRO supply chains is particularly challenging. The objective of
this study is to identify strategies to improve MSROs' value provision capability. In
particular, we propose a mechanism design approach, and determine which recipient to serve at each
shipping opportunity based on recipients' reported preference rankings of different products.
We find that when MSRO inventory information is shared with recipients, the only truthful
mechanism is random selection among recipients, which defeats the purpose of eliciting information.
Consequently, we propose two operational strategies to improve MSROs' value provision: i) not
sharing MSRO inventory information with recipients; and ii) withholding information
regarding other recipients. We characterize the set of truthful mechanisms under each
setting, and show that eliminating inventory and competitor information provision both improve
MSROs' value provision. Further, we investigate the value of cardinal mechanisms where
recipients report their valuations. We show that in our setting, eliciting valuations has no
value added beyond eliciting rankings under a wide class of implementable mechanisms.
Finally, we present a calibrated numerical study based on historical data from a partner
MSRO, and show that a strategy consisting of a ranking- based mechanism in conjunction with
eliminating inventory and competitor information can significantly improve MSROs' value provision.
Speaker Bio: Beril Toktay is Professor of Operations Management, Brady Family Chairholder and
ADVANCE Professor. Her primary research areas are sustainable operations and supply chain
management. Professor Toktay’s research has been funded by several National Science Foundation grants and has received distinctions such as the 2010 Brady Family Award for Faculty Research Excellence and the MSOM Society’s 2015 Management Science Best Paper in Operations
Her research articles have appeared in Management Science, M&SOM, Operations Research, Production
and Operations Management and Industrial Ecology. She became a Distinguished Fell of the MSOM
Society in 2017.
Professor Toktay has taught Supply Chain Management courses at the PhD, MBA, and Executive
Education levels as well as Operations Management and Operations Research courses at the PhD level. She has developed cases and pedagogical material for MBA and Executive Education audiences and co-
curricular educational initiatives at the undergraduate level. She currently teaches Business
Strategies for Sustainability in MBA and Executive Education programs. She's a recipient of the
2016 Ernest Scheller Jr. Award for Service Excellence and the Georgia Tech 2015 Women of
Professor Toktay served as Associate Editor for M&SOM (2007-2018), POM (2009-2013), and Management
Science (2011-2017), and Area Editor (Environment, Energy and Sustainability) for Operations
Research (2012-2018). She co-edited the M&SOM Special Issue on the Environment. She was the
President of the MSOM Society and VP of Finance of the POM Society. At Georgia Tech, she serves as
the Scheller College of Business ADVANCE Professor, a role that is focused on supporting the
advancement of women and underrepresented minorities in academia. She is the founding Faculty
Director of the Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business and the co-architect and Executive
Co-Director of Georgia Tech's Serve.Learn.Sustain Quality Enhancement Plan.