Dr Valery Pavlov

MS, Engineering Physics; PhD in Business Administration and Operations Research (dual title degree)


  • 1989 MS, Engineering Physics from the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology, Moscow, Russia
  • 2009 PhD in Business Administration and Operations Research (dual title degree) from the Smeal College of Business, The Pennsylvania State University, USA

Research | Current

Research Interests: Supply Chain Management, Behavioural Operations, Healthcare

Supply Chain Management is, for the most part, about coordination. That is, about finding ways to create win-win scenarios. Among many other factors responsible for making such a good intention very difficult to implement two are of particular interest: human's rationality is bounded but, at the same time, people are incredibly strategic.

Healthcare problems are perhaps the most urgent and rewarding to work on because even a slight improvment may be beneficial for a large number of people. At the same time, they appear to be the hardest. As an example, the problem of Emergency Department crowding has become an area of active research 30 years ago. However, despite all academic research and improvement efforts continuously put by hospitals, the situation with ED crowding appears to be only getting worse across the world.

The main tools of trade: Python, zTree/oTree, R/Shiny, PowerBI, Python, Simio (under a grant from Simio LLC), cplex/gurobi/xpress.


Teaching | Current

Teaching philosophy:

Evidence-based and goal-oriented teaching.

"What is worth teaching?" This probably seems a very strange question for an instructor to think of. Isn't it subject matter? The answer, it seems, may not be as straightforward if one looks at the real-world evidence. According to alumni of Wharton Business School with 5, 10 and 15 years of practical experience after graduation, the most important skill they gained at the university was neither the ability to speak and write, nor the leadership, nor the team work and not even the subject-specific skills! 

What is most effective way for developing that (not mentioned above) most important skill? Is it about using a whiteboard or keeping up with innovations (apps, videos, etc)? Looking for the answers supported by real-life evidence one comes across Taiichi Ohno who, arguably, was one of the best teachers of all times in the business world (judging by the results). He was saying that acting like a mom inhibits learning. Dr Sebastian Thrun, one of pioneers of MOOC, formulates the same idea more directly by saying that trying to learn by watching the professor lecturing is "... like trying to lose weight by watching a professor exercise". 

According to Forrest Gump's mother, "Life is like a box of chocolate. You never know what you gonna get". Valery sees his role in preparing students to deal with real life challenges that do not care about whether they were clearly explained in the textbook or not. Valery is committed to offering exam questions that test students' skills in "connecting the dots" by making all exams  "open book" and, whenever this is allowed by the University policies, "open Internet".  Students relying on anything else except for  the skills they should have developed by working on (actually, struggling with) the course assignments themselves are likely to conclude the questions are unfair. 

Cources taught:

  • OPSMGT 376 “Strategic Procurement” (University of Auckland, 2011-current)
  • OPSMGT 371 “Business Logistics” (University of Auckland, 2011-current)
  • OPSMGT 780/766 “Foundations of Supply Chain Management” (University of Auckland, 2011-2014)
  • OPSMGT 258 “Business Process Management” (University of Auckland, 2010)
  • BA 475 “Operations Strategy” (UWM, Spring 2010)
  • Bus Mgmt (MBA) 711 “Competitive Operations Strategy” (UWM, Winterim 2010 & Spring 2010)
  • BA 370 “Operations Management” (UWM, Fall 2009)
  • BA 302 “Introduction to Supply Chain Management” (PSU, Summer 2009)
  • SCM 421 “Supply Chain Modelling” (PSU, Fall 2007, Spring 2008, Fall 2008)

Postgraduate supervision

To potential PhD students:

I am keen to supervise PhD students interested to develop analytic models. Some great examples:

  1. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1020451
  2. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=944155
  3. http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1010268
  4. http://or.journal.informs.org/content/50/3/517.abstract
  5. http://msom.highwire.org/content/2/2/144.abstract

Supervised students

Mr Ian Draper (completed)

Ms Octavia Sheha - BCom (completed)

Mr Vinh Le - BCom (completed)

Mr Nico Laya - MCom (completed)

Ms Xin Wang - MCom (completed)

Mr Bingkun Zhu - MCom (completed)

Mr Ali Vahabzadeh - PhD (in progress) 

Ms Neda Pourreza - PhD (in progress)

Ms Ayda Shams - PhD (in progress)


2012 M&SOM Meritorious Service Award

2015 Behavioral Operation Management section of INFORMS Best Working Paper Award (for "Bargaining Process and Channel Efficiency" by Ernan Haruvy, Elena Katok, and Valery Pavlov)


ISOM Department PhD coordinator

DECIDE (Laboratory for Business Decision Making) co-director

Areas of expertise

  • Supply Chain Management
  • Behavioural Operations Management

Committees/Professional groups/Services

A reviewer for:

  • Management Science
  • Operations Research
  • Manufacturing and Service Operations Management
  • Production and Operations Management
  • Journal of Operations Management
  • European Journal of Operations Research
  • Decision Sciences

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Pavlov, V., Robinson, L. W., & Lin, T. (2015). Social Comparison and Pull-to-Center in Newsvendor Contests. Paper presented at INFORMS 2015 Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, USA. 1 November - 4 November 2015. Related URL.
  • Pavlov, V., & Katok, E. (2015). Fairness and coordination failures in supply chain contracts.
  • Laya, N., & Pavlov, V. (2015). Team decision-making and individual learning in the newsvendor problem: a laboratory investigation. Related URL.
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/26639
  • Pavlov, V., & Laya, N. (2014). Team Decision-making and Individual Learning in the Newsvendor Problem. Paper presented at INFORMS Annual Meeting 2014, San Francisco, California, USA. 9 November - 12 November 2014. Related URL.
  • Pavlov, V., & Vahabzadeh, A. (2014). Dynamic Multi-class Kidney Allocation. Paper presented at INFORMS Annual Meeting 2014, San Francisco, California, USA. 9 November - 12 November 2014. Related URL.
  • Pavlov, V., & Laya, N. (2014). Learning and unlearning in the newsvendor problem: An experimental study. Paper presented at 2014 Asia-Pacific ESA Conference, Auckland, New Zealand. 19 February - 22 February 2014.
  • Katok, E., & Pavlov, V. (2013). Fairness in supply chain contracts: A laboratory study. Journal of Operations Management, 31 (3), 129-137. 10.1016/j.jom.2013.01.001
  • Katok, E., Olsen, T., & Pavlov, V. (2012). Wholesale Pricing under Mild and Privately Known Concerns for Fairness. Production and Operations Management10.1111/j.1937-5956.2012.01388.x
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Tava Olsen

Contact details

Primary office location

Level 4, Room 424
New Zealand