Christian Terwiesch

Christian Terwiesch
  • Andrew M. Heller Professor at the Wharton School
  • Professor of Operations, Information and Decisions
  • Professor of Health Policy, Perelman School of Medicine
  • Co-Director, Mack Institute of Innovation Management
  • Department Chair

Contact Information

  • office Address:

    3730 Walnut Street
    573 Jon M. Huntsman Hall
    Philadelphia, PA 19104

Research Interests: healthcare operations, innovation management, lean operations, new service delivery models

Links: CV, Personal Website, Coursera - Operations Management, Healthcare Operations Online, Mastering Innovation

Overview

Christian Terwiesch is the Andrew M. Heller Professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Professor in Wharton’s Operations, Information and Decisions department, co-director of Penn’s Mack Institute for Innovation Management, and also holds a faculty appointment In Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine. His research on Operations Management and on Innovation Management appears in many of the leading academic journals ranging from Management Science to The New England Journal of Medicine. He is an award winning teacher with extensive experience in MBA teaching and executive education.

Professor Terwiesch is the co-author of Matching Supply with Demand, a widely used text-book in Operations Management that is now in its third edition. Based on this book, Professor Terwiesch has launched the first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) in business on Coursera. By now, well over 250,000 students enrolled in the course.

His latest book, Innovation Tournaments, was published by Harvard Business School Press. The novel, process-based approach to innovation outlined in the book was featured by BusinessWeek, the Financial Times, and the Sloan Management Review and has lead to innovation tournaments in organizations around the world.

Professor Terwiesch has researched with and consulted for various organizations. From small start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, he has helped companies become more innovative, often by implementing innovation tournament events and by helping to restructure their innovation portfolio.

Most of his current work relates to healthcare and innovation management. In the healthcare space, some of Professor Terwiesch recent projects include the design of patient centered care processes in the VA hospital system, the impact of emergency room crowding on hospital revenues and the patient experience at Penn Medicine, and the usage of patient portals and remote patient monitoring.

In addition to his teaching and his research, Professor Terwiesch is experimenting with a new career as a host of a national radio show on Sirius XM 132. Also, after 20 years of Ironman racing, he is trying to become a competitive rower, a transition that unfortunately turns out to be harder than expected.

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Research

  • Dawson Kaaua, Santiago Gallino, Christian Terwiesch, S Mehta (Working), The Impact of Waiting Location on Customer Satisfaction: An Empirical Analysis of Preoperative Patient Flow.

  • Suparerk Lekwijit, Christian Terwiesch, David Asch, Kevin Volpp (Under Review), Evaluating the Efficacy of Connected Healthcare: An Empirical Examination of Patient Engagement Systems and Their Impact on Readmission.

    Abstract: Connected healthcare is a form of health delivery that connects patients and providers through connected health devices, allowing providers to monitor patient behavior and proactively intervene before an adverse event occurs. Unlike the costs, the benefits of connected healthcare in improving patient behavior and health outcomes are usually difficult to determine. In this study, we examine the efficacy of a connected health system that aimed to reduce readmissions through improved medication adherence. Specifically, we study 1,000 patients with heart disease who received electronic pill bottles that tracked medication adherence. Patients who were non-adherent received active social support that involved different types of feedback such as text messages and calls. By integrating data on adherence, intervention, and readmission, we aim to (1) investigate the efficacy of connected healthcare in promoting medication adherence, (2) examine the relationship between medication adherence and readmission, and (3) develop a dynamic readmission risk-scoring model that considers medication adherence and use the model to better target non-adherent patients. Our findings suggest that patients are more likely to become adherent when they or their partners receive high levels of intervention that involve personalized feedback and when the intervention is escalated quickly and consistently. We also find that long-term adherence to two crucial heart medications, statins and beta-blockers, is strongly associated with reduced readmission risk. Lastly, using counterfactual simulation, we apply the dynamic readmission risk-scoring model to our setting and find that, when using an intervention strategy that prioritizes high-risk patients, we obtain 10% fewer readmissions than we would obtain without considering readmission risk while using the same effort level from the patient support team.

  • Antonio Moreno-Garcia and Christian Terwiesch (Forthcoming), Product Line Decisions as a Hedge Against Uncertainty: An Empirical Analysis in the US Automotive Industry.

  • Lesley Meng, Bob Batt, Christian Terwiesch (Working), The Impact of Facility Layout on Worker Behavior: An Empirical Study of Nurses in the Emergency Department.

    Abstract: We study the impact of service facility layout on how service workers organize their tasks. We focus on the hospital emergency department (ED) as a service setting where nurses (servers) have discretion over how they interact with their patients (customers) in a facility that introduces significant heterogeneity in necessary walking distance. We utilize a unique dataset consisting of infrared nurse location tracking data, patient EMR data, bedside call data, and the architectural floor plan, to show that nurses reduce their total walking distance by decreasing the frequency of visits to patient rooms far away. We show that this behavior is consistent with batching their tasks rather than a reduction of tasks. While this behavior reduces necessary nurse walking, it comes at the expense of poorer care quality. We find that patients in rooms farthest away press the nurse call button more frequently, an action that is linked with poor patient satisfaction. These findings show that even in services, facility layout can lead to servers with discretion over task timing using that discretion in ways that help the server but that lead to reduced customer quality.

  • Robert Batt and Christian Terwiesch (Forthcoming), The Behavior of Doctors Under Load: An Empirical Analysis of Emergency Care.

  • Antonio Moreno-Garcia and Christian Terwiesch (2015), Pricing and Production Flexibility: An Empirical Analysis of the US Automotive Industry, Manufacturing and Service Operations Management (MSOM), Vol. 17 (Iss. 4), pp. 428-444.

  • Mary Pelak, Amy Pettit, Christian Terwiesch, Jennifer Gutierrez (2015), Rethinking Primary Care Visits: How Much Can Be Eliminated, Delegated, or Performed Outside of the Face-to-Face Visit?, Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, Vol. 21, pp. 591-596.

  • Robert Batt and Christian Terwiesch (2015), Transparency in Waiting Lines: An Empirical Study of Patient Abandonment Behavior in the Emergency Department, Management Science, Vol. 61 (No. 1), pp. 39-59.

  • Jennifer Gutierrez, Christian Terwiesch, Mary Pelak, Amy Pettit, Steven C. Marcus (2015), Characterizing Primary Care Visit Activities at Veterans Health Administration Clinics, Journal of Healthcare Management.

  • Rachel M. Werner, Anne Canamucio, Steven C. Marcus, Christian Terwiesch (2014), Primary Care Access and Emergency Room Use Among Older Veterans, Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Teaching

Online Teaching:

HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS with LAB: APPLYING HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS (Penn Medical Ethics and Health Policy Online Education Center)

INTRODUCTION TO OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT (Coursera)

Current Courses

  • HCIN601 - Health Care Operations

    The word "operations" derives from the Latin "opus," and opus means work. So by definition, operations is about work. This course offers an introduction to operations management: after completing the course, you will be able to use a systematic approach for analyzing and improving your work in health care settings. This will benefit patients, teams of care providers, and staff. The course includes an examination of inefficiencies resulting from the three system inhibitors: waste, variability, and inflexibility. And it provides strategies for engaging in the ongoing process of reducing these negative impacts without sacrificing quality of care. This course offers an introduction to operations management, examining inefficiencies from waste, variability, and inflexibility and providing strategies for engaging in the ongoing process of reducing these negative impacts without sacrificing quality of care. After completing the course, learners will be able to use a systematic approach for analyzing and improving their work in health care settings.

    HCIN601001

    HCIN601002

  • OIDD611 - Quality And Productivity

    Matching supply with demand is an enormous challenge for firms: excess supply is too costly, inadequate supply irritates customers. In the course, we will explore how firms can better organize their operations so that they more effectively align their supply with the demand for their products and services. Throughout the course, we illustrate mathematical analysis applied to real operational challenges--we seek rigor and relevance. Our aim is to provide both tactical knowledge and high-level insights needed by general managers and management consultants. We will demonstrate that companies can use (and have used) the principles from this course to significantly enhance their competitiveness.

    OIDD611001 ( Syllabus )

    OIDD611003 ( Syllabus )

    OIDD611005 ( Syllabus )

    OIDD611751

    OIDD611752

Past Courses

  • EAS 499 - SENIOR CAPSTONE

    The Senior Capstone Project is required for all BAS degree students, in lieu of the senior design course. The Capstone Project provides an opportunity for the student to apply the theoretical ideas and tools learned from other courses. The project is usually applied, rather than theoretical, exercise, and should focus on a real world problem related to the career goals of the student. The one-semester project may be completed in either the fall or sprong term of the senior year, and must be done under the supervision of a sponsoring faculty member. To register for this course, the student must submit a detailed proposal, signed by the supervising professor, and the student's faculty advisor, to the Office of Academic Programs two weeks prior to the start of the term.

  • HCIN601 - HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS

    The word "operations" derives from the Latin "opus," and opus means work. So by definition, operations is about work. This course offers an introduction to operations management: after completing the course, you will be able to use a systematic approach for analyzing and improving your work in health care settings. This will benefit patients, teams of care providers, and staff. The course includes an examination of inefficiencies resulting from the three system inhibitors: waste, variability, and inflexibility. And it provides strategies for engaging in the ongoing process of reducing these negative impacts without sacrificing quality of care. This course offers an introduction to operations management, examining inefficiencies from waste, variability, and inflexibility and providing strategies for engaging in the ongoing process of reducing these negative impacts without sacrificing quality of care. After completing the course, learners will be able to use a systematic approach for analyzing and improving their work in health care settings.

  • HCIN606 - APPLYING OPERATIONS MGMT

    Analyze 2 health care cases; through the process of forecasting, build a KPI tree; and recommend process improvements.

  • HCIN610 - CONNECTED HEALTH CARE

    Technology has allowed firms to fundamentally change how they connect with their customers. Rather than having occasional, episodic interactions--where customers realize they have an unmet need and then look for ways to fill it--firms are striving to be continuously connected to their customers, providing services and products as the needs arise, even before customers become aware of them. There is probably no other industry for which this development will be as transformative as in health care delivery. Wearable devices, smart pill bottles, and digestible sensors--all of these technologies, and many more, are associated with the promise of improving the quality of care while also making efficient use of resources. This course explores the impact of connected strategies in general, and in particular the opportunities associated with them in health care delivery.

  • OIDD611 - QUALITY AND PRODUCTIVITY

    Matching supply with demand is an enormous challenge for firms: excess supply is too costly, inadequate supply irritates customers. In the course, we will explore how firms can better organize their operations so that they more effectively align their supply with the demand for their products and services. Throughout the course, we illustrate mathematical analysis applied to real operational challenges--we seek rigor and relevance. Our aim is to provide both tactical knowledge and high-level insights needed by general managers and management consultants. We will demonstrate that companies can use (and have used) the principles from this course to significantly enhance their competitiveness.

  • OIDD941 - DIST SYSTEM SEM

    Seminar on distribution systems models and theory. Reviews current research in the development and solution of models of distribution systems. Emphasizes multi-echelon inventory control, logistics management, network design, and competitive models.

Awards and Honors

  • Distinguished Fellow: Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, 2017
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (Philadelphia), 2017
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (San Francisco), 2017
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (Philadelphia), 2016
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (San Francisco), 2016
  • Named by Online Course Review as one of the 50 Most Popular MOOCs of All Time, 2015
  • Named by Talk Magazine as one of the Five Best Business Courses Online, 2015
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (San Francisco), 2015
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (Philadelphia), 2015
  • Executive MBA Excellence in Teaching Award (San Francisco), 2014
  • Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award winner, 2012
  • “Tough, but I’ll thank you in 5 years”, 2012
  • “Goes above and beyond the call of duty”, 2012
  • MBA Excellence in Teaching Award, 2012
  • “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” award recipient, 2011
  • “Tough but I will thank you in five years” award recipient, 2011
  • One of ten faculty nominated by the MBA student body for the Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award, 2010
  • MBA Excellence in Teaching Award, 2010
  • Executive MBA Core Teaching Award, 2009
  • “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” award recipient, 2009
  • “Tough but I will thank you in five years” award recipient, 2009
  • Wharton Class of 2008 “Goes above and beyond the call of duty” award recipient, 2008
  • One of ten faculty nominated by the MBA student body for the Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award, 2007
  • MBA Core Teaching Award, 2007
  • Miller-Sherrerd Core Teaching Award, 2006
  • MBA Core Curriculum Award “Goes above and beyond the call of duty”, 2006
  • Teaching Awards for MBA and Executive MBA teaching, 1998-2005
  • MBA Core Curriculum Award “Goes above and beyond the Call of duty”, 2003
  • Research Grant from Wharton e-Business Initiative for Analysis of Name-Your-Own Price Retailing, 2002 Description

    $7,000

  • Finalist in the Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award, 2002
  • Executive MBA Teaching Award for best Core Course, 2002
  • Miller-Sherrerd MBA Core Teaching Award, 2002
  • Teaching Excellence Award (Wharton), 2002
  • Research Grant from Wharton e-Business Initiative for Analysis of Name-Your-Own Price Retailing, 2001 Description

    $17.1K

  • Finalist in the Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award, 2001
  • Miller-Sherrerd MBA Core Teaching Award, 2001
  • Teaching Excellence Award (Wharton), 2001
  • Finalist in the Helen Kardon Moss Anvil Award, 2000
  • Teaching Excellence Award (Wharton), 2000
  • Teaching Excellence Award (Wharton), 1999
  • Daimler Benz Research Grant as a participant of the Circle Member Group, 1995
  • Distinguished Fellow: Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, 1970

In the News

Activity

Latest Research

Dawson Kaaua, Santiago Gallino, Christian Terwiesch, S Mehta (Working), The Impact of Waiting Location on Customer Satisfaction: An Empirical Analysis of Preoperative Patient Flow.
All Research

Awards and Honors

Distinguished Fellow: Manufacturing & Service Operations Management 2017
All Awards