Campuses:

Ravi Bapna

Professor, Board of Overseers Professorship in Information and Decision Sciences, Academic Director, SOBACO
Information & Decision Sciences

Education

  • PhD 1999
    Business Administration, Operations & Information Management University of Connecticut

  • BT 1993
    Computer Engineering Manipal Institute of Technology, Mangalore University, India

Expertise

  • Social media
  • Big data
  • Business analytics
  • Online strategies and monetization
  • Online auctions
  • Economics of IT

Dr. Ravi Bapna is the Board of Overseers Professor of Information and Decision Sciences Department at the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. Bapna is the founding academic co-director (with Professor Joe Konstan) of University of Minnesota's Social Media and Business Analytics Collaborative (SOBACO), an inter-disciplinary resarch center that views the billion strong, online social-graph as a giant global laboratory, a sandbox to gain a deeper causal understanding of how consumers, firms, industries and societies are being reshaped by the social media and big-data revolution.

He teaches graduate students, executives, CIOs and CMOs on how to leverage the digital revolution for competitive advantage. His professional interests have resulted in research, consulting and executive education engagements with a variety of leading US and Indian companies. He regularly delivers keynote addresses on the leveraging big-data and social media to industry bodies and corporations. 

Prior to joining Carlson, Bapna was a tenured associate professor at the Indian School of Business and the University of Connecticut. He served as the Executive Director of the Srini Raju Centre for Information Technology and the Networked Economy (SRITNE) at the Indian School of Business, where he founded  the CIO Academy. At UConn Bapna was an Associate Professor and Ackerman Scholar in the Operations and Information Management Department at the School of Business.

His research interests are in the areas of economics of information systems, social media, big-data analytics, peer influence, monetization and design of Freemium communities, human capital issues in the IT services industry, online auctions, e-market design, Grid computing, and the design of the IT organization. His research has been extensively published in a wide array of journals such as Management Science, Informs Journal on Computing, Statistical Science, Information Systems Research, Journal of Retailing, MIS Quarterly, Decision Sciences, CACM, Naval Research Logistics, DSS, EJOR and ITM. His views have featured in theFinancial Times, Wall Street Journal, LiveMint, India Knowledge @ Wharton, The Economic Times and Business Today.

Professor Bapna has been invited to present his research at the National Bureau of Economic Research, Federal Trade Commission, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), Google Inc., Bangalore, Harvard University, The Wharton School, Carnegie Mellon University, New York University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Boston University, University of Maryland, IIM-Calcutta, National Chengchi University, Taiwan, University of Washington, National University of Singapore and the University of Connecticut among others. He was invited to give the keynote address for the 13th International Conference on Electronic Commerce 2011, Liverpool, UK.

Bapna serves as a senior editor for MIS Quarterly and has been an associate editor for Management Science and Information Systems Research. He has served as the co-chair of the prestigious Workshop on Information Systems Economics (WISE) 2010, and the Conference on IS and Technology (CIST) 2009. He is one of the three founders of the Statistical Challenges in E-Commerce (SCECR) workshop. He regularly serves on program committees of major international IS conferences and workshops, and was the co-chair of the First International Symposium of Information Systems held at ISB.

Professor Bapna completed his Bachelors in Commerce from St. Xavier's College, Calcutta, Bachelors in Computer Engineering from the Manipal Institute of Technology and received his doctorate degree from the University of Connecticut, where his thesis was in the area of Information Systems.

Selected Works

  • Bapna, R., Umyarov, A, 2014, "Do Your Online Friends Make You Pay? A Randomized Field Experiment in an Online Music Social Network," forthcoming in Management Science.
  • Mehra A., Langer, N., Bapna, R., Gopal, R., 2014, "Examining Returns to Training and Human Capital Investments for IT Services Firms," forthcoming in MIS Quarterly.
  • Bapna, R., Langer, A., Mehra, A., Gopal, R., Gupta, A., "Examining Return on Human Capital Investments in the Context of Offshore IT Workers," Management Science, March 2013, 59, pp.641-658..
  • Bapna, R., Barua, A., Mani, D., Mehra, A., "Cooperation, Coordination and Governance in Multi-Sourcing: An Agenda for Analytical and Empirical Research," Information Systems Research (20 Anniversary Special Issue) 2010, 21, pp 785-795.
  • Bapna, R., Dellarocas, C., Rice, S., "Vertically Differentiated Simultaneous Vickrey Auctions: Theory and Experimental Evidence," Management Science, July 2010; 56: pp 1074 - 1092

Current Activities

Current Research

  • I'm fascinated by the fact that the current incarnation of the IT revolution has resulted in a billion people connected globally on the social graph, and five billion people with mobile connectivity. I view this billion-strong API enabled social graph, as a global laboratory, where we can ask fundamental questions about human behavior and develop causal inferences about the same. Questions such as detecting and potentially maximizing peer influence for desirable outcomes, developing real-time revealed preference style measures of trust and reciprocity from activity on Facebook, or looking at the role of search costs in mitigating social failures in online dating. From a methodology perspective, I'm currently biased towards randomized trials in real-world platforms.
612-625-3698
3-365 Carlson School
Curriculum Vitae (232.16 KB)

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