New problems in Retail/E-commerce

Sep 24 2021 - 1pm


Prof. Gurhan Kok



Remote participants can join via Zoom:


I will cover my recent research agenda on retail operations. 1) Attribute-based personalized product recommendation based on learning models. We show that learning attribute preferences of customers lead to recommendations with higher probability of purchase and clicks, especially for new products and recent customers. 2) Pricing competition and mechanism design in e-commerce marketplaces. We find that a probabilistic allocation of buy-box to competing vendors may outperform a deterministic allocation under certain conditions from the perspective of the marketplace operator, vendors, and the total surplus. 3) Online display optimization for e-commerce. Allocation display space online (the new shelf) leads to new optimization problems. Incorporating consumer response elasticity to space and location decisions may lead to significantly increased conversion for ecommerce players. 4)Impact of store openings for an online retailer. We empirically characterize the net impact of store openings on total sales and the mechanisms for generating sales given potential cannibalization or halo effect on online sales


Gurhan Kök is a Professor of Operations Management at Koç University and the Academic Director of Koç University-Migros Retail Research Center.  Prior to joining Koç in 2014, he served as a tenured faculty member at  Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. He received his Ph.D. in 2003 at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Professor Kök’s research interests focus on supply chain management, retail operations, inventory management, and assortment planning. He is the recipient of the coveted Marie Curie International Fellowship grant given by the European Commission. His papers appeared in Management Science, Manufacturing and Service Operations Management, and Operations Research.  He is currently serving on the editorial boards of Management Science, Manufacturing and Service Operations Management. Gürhan Kök is also the founder and Chief Scientist of Invent Analytics, a SaaS-based data analytics company providing inventory, price and assortment optimization solutions to a variety of U.S. and European retailers.