William L. Cooper

Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
University of Minnesota
111 Church Street S.E.
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Email: billcoop@umn.edu

Research Interests

  • Revenue Management and Pricing
  • Applied Probability


  • University of Minnesota
    • Professor (Fall 2013 -- Present)
    • Associate Professor (Fall 2005 -- Summer 2013)
    • Assistant Professor (Fall 1999 -- Summer 2005)


  • Ph.D., Industrial Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, 1999
  • B.A., Mathematics, University of Pennsylvania, 1993

Research Papers

  • C. Du, W. L. Cooper, and Z. Wang. Optimal pricing for a multinomial logit choice model with network effects. Operations Research, 64(2), 441-455, 2016. [manuscript, appendix, journal]
  • Y. Liu and W. L. Cooper. Optimal dynamic pricing with patient customers. Operations Research, 63(6), 1307-1319, 2015. [manuscript, appendix, journal]
  • W. L. Cooper, T. Homem-de-Mello, and A. J. Kleywegt. Learning and pricing with models that do not explicitly incorporate competition. Operations Research, 63(1), 86-103, 2015. [manuscript, appendix, journal]
  • W. L. Cooper and B. Rangarajan. Performance guarantees for empirical Markov decision processes with applications to multiperiod inventory models. Operations Research, 60(5), 1267-1281, 2012. [paper, appendix]
  • W. L. Cooper and L. Li. On the use of buy up as a model of customer choice in revenue management. Production and Operations Management, 21(5), 833-850, 2012. [journal]
  • S. Benjaafar, W. L. Cooper, and S. Mardan. Production-inventory systems with imperfect advance demand information and updating. Naval Research Logistics, 58(2), 88-106, 2011. [journal]
  • K. Amaruchkul, W. L. Cooper, and D. Gupta. A note on air-cargo capacity contracts. Production and Operations Management, 20(1), 152-162, 2011. [journal]
  • D. Zhang and W. L. Cooper. Pricing substitutable flights in airline revenue management. European Journal of Operational Research, 197(3), 848-861, 2009. [journal]
  • D. Zhang and W. L. Cooper. Managing clearance sales in the presence of strategic customers. Production and Operations Management, 17(4), 416-431, 2008. [paper]
  • K. Amaruchkul, W. L. Cooper, and D. Gupta. Single-leg air-cargo revenue management. Transportation Science, 41(4), 457-469, 2007. [paper]
  • W. L. Cooper and T. Homem-de-Mello. Some decomposition methods for revenue management. Transportation Science, 41(3), 332-353, 2007. [paper]
  • W. L. Cooper, T. Homem-de-Mello, and A. J. Kleywegt. Models of the spiral-down effect in revenue management. Operations Research, 54(5), 968-987, 2006. [paper, appendix]
  • W. L. Cooper and D. Gupta. Stochastic comparisons in airline revenue management. Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, 8(3), 221-234, 2006. [paper]
  • D. Zhang and W. L. Cooper. Revenue management for parallel flights with customer-choice behavior. Operations Research, 53(3), 415-431, 2005. [paper]
  • S. Benjaafar, W. L. Cooper, and J.-S. Kim. On the benefits of pooling in production-inventory systems. Management Science, 51(4), 548-565, 2005. [paper]
  • D. Gupta and W. L. Cooper. Stochastic comparisons in production yield management. Operations Research, 53(2), 377-384, 2005. [paper]
  • W. L. Cooper, S. G. Henderson, and M. E. Lewis. Convergence of simulation-based policy iteration. Probability in the Engineering and Informational Sciences, 17(2), 213-234, 2003. [journal]
  • W. L. Cooper. Asymptotic behavior of an allocation policy for revenue management. Operations Research, 50(4), 720-727, 2002. [paper]
  • W. L. Cooper and R. L. Tweedie. Perfect simulation of an inventory model for perishable products. Stochastic Models, 18(2), 229-243, 2002. [journal]
  • W. L. Cooper. Pathwise properties and performance bounds for a perishable inventory system. Operations Research, 49(3), 455-466, 2001. [paper]
  • W. L. Cooper, V. Schmidt, and R. F. Serfozo. Skorohod-Loynes characterizations of queueing, fluid, and inventory processes. Queueing Systems, 37(1-3), 233-257, 2001. [journal]
  • W. L. Cooper. Negative binomial sums of random variables and discounted reward processes. Journal of Applied Probability, 35(3), 589-599, 1998. [journal]

Funded Research

  • Revenue management with network effects. PI: W. L. Cooper, Co-PI: Z. Wang. National Science Foundation, 2015-2018.
  • Model accuracy and learning in revenue management and dynamic pricing. PIs: W. L. Cooper, T. Homem-de-Mello, A. J. Kleywegt. National Science Foundation, 2007-2011.
  • Stochastic optimization for revenue management. PI: W. L. Cooper, Co-PI: T. Homem-de-Mello. National Science Foundation, 2001-2005.
  • Joint optimization of resource allocation and operational decisions for improving random yield. PI: D. Gupta, Co-PI: W. L. Cooper. National Science Foundation, 2001-2004.
  • Air-cargo revenue management in the presence of intermediaries. PI: D. Gupta, Co-PI: W. L. Cooper. National Science Foundation, 2004-2006.


  • IE 3521/4521 Statistics, Quality, and Reliability (Taught many times)
  • IE 4011 Stochastic Models (Taught twice)
  • IE 5532 Stochastic Models (Taught once)
  • IE 8532 Stochastic Processes and Queueing Systems (Taught many times)
  • IE 8533 Advanced Stochastic Processes and Queueing Systems (Taught three times)
  • IE 8534 Advanced Topics: Pricing and Revenue Management (Taught once)
  • IE 8534/8990 Advanced Topics: Markov Decision Processes (Taught twice)

Service Activities

  • Chair of INFORMS Revenue Management and Pricing Section (2010-2011)
  • Director of Graduate Studies, Industrial and Systems Engineering, University of Minnesota (2009-Present)
  • Department Editor, Revenue Management, Production and Operations Management (2012-2015)
  • Associate Editor, Operations Research (2006-Present)
  • Associate Editor, Management Science (2009-2014)
  • Senior Editor, Production and Operations Management (2006-2011)
  • Associate Editor, IIE Transactions (2005-2008)
  • Program Chair for 2013 INFORMS Annual Meeting, Minneapolis, MN
  • Program Co-Chair for 2016 INFORMS International Meeting, Waikoloa, HI
  • Referee for journals including Operations Research; Management Science; Mathematics of Operations Research; Manufacturing & Service Operations Management; Transportation Science; IIE Transactions; Probability in the Engineering and Informational Sciences; Stochastic Models; Queueing Systems; Naval Research Logistics; Production and Operations Management; Annals of Operations Research; IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics; European Journal of Operational Research; The Engineering Economist; INFOR; Journal of Revenue and Pricing Management; INFORMS Transactions on Education

Graduated Ph.D. Advisees

  • Dan Zhang. Graduated 2005. Dissertation: Revenue management with customer choice. Current Position: Associate Professor, Leeds School of Business, University of Colorado.
  • Setareh Mardan. Graduated 2006 (co-advised with S. Benjaafar). Dissertation: Control policies for stochastic production-inventory systems. Current Position: Science Manager, PROS, Houston, TX.
  • Kannapha Amaruchkul. Graduated 2007 (co-advised with D. Gupta). Dissertation: Models for air-cargo allotment management and booking control. Current Position: Associate Professor, Graduate School of Applied Statistics, National Institute of Development Administration, Bangkok, Thailand.
  • Le Li. Graduated 2010. Dissertation: On the use of some misspecified models of customer choice in revenue management. Current Position: Senior Data Scientist, LeEco US, Seattle, WA.
  • Yan Liu. Graduated 2015 (co-advised with Z. Wang). Dissertation: Optimal pricing with new models of consumer behavior. Current Position: Assistant Professor, College of Management and Economics, Tianjin University.