Sachar International Center, 209B
Departments/ProgramsInternational Business School
DegreesHarvard University, Business School, D.B.A.
ExpertiseOperations management, Process Improvement, Organizational Learning, Organizational Change, Toyota Production System ("Lean"), Supply Chain, Coordination, Healthcare, Hospitals, Service Organizations
ProfileAnita Tucker teaches operations management and supply chain management for undergraduates and masters-level students. She has her bachelor's and master's degrees in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research. Her doctorate is in Business Administration, Technology and Operations Management from the Harvard Business School. Prior to joining Brandeis, Professor Tucker taught at Wharton and Harvard Business Schools. Before pursuing her doctorate, Anita worked in operations positions for General Mills and the Electric Boat division of General Dynamics. Her manufacturing experiences are therefore diverse: ranging from fruit-on-the-bottom yogurt to nuclear submarines!
Professor Tucker's research studies how organizational process design impacts the quality and efficiency of work. In particular, she has studied care delivery processes in hospitals. Her research finds that the mismatch between "supply-to-stock" supply departments with the "care-to-order" nursing units results in workarounds, expensive inefficiencies, employee burnout, and medical errors. She leverages principles from operations management to help hospital design better internal supply systems.
Her research has won numerous awards including a doctoral dissertation award from HBS, a Best Dissertation award from AcademyHealth, a Sloan Industry Studies Fellowship, a best paper award from California Management Review, and several best paper proceedings awards from the Academy of Management.
She was part of the team that founded the "Production and Operations Management (POM) Society's" College of Healthcare Operations, and served as President of the college. She is the inaugural health care department editor for Journal of Operations Management, an associate editor at several leading journals including POM and INFORMS' Service Science. She was awarded a "Distinguished Reviewer" award for Management Science.
Professor Tucker has written several case studies on process improvement in hospitals. She also designed in-class hands on exercises to teach about operations management theories, such as pull and push production systems, and internal supply chains. Webpage
|BUS||174a||Supply Chain Management|
|BUS||273f||Managing Service Organizations|
|BUS||274f||Supply Chain Analytics|
Awards and Honors
Finalist - INFORMS Behavioral Operations Best Working Paper Award (2015)
Winner - INFORMS Health Application Society Best Student Paper Award (Co-author on the paper) (2015)
Wyss Award For Excellence In Mentoring Doctoral Students (2014)
Academy of Management Best Paper Proceedings (multiple years) (2013)
Management Science Distinguished Service Award (2013)
Finalist For Best Industry Studies Paper Award (2011)
Academy Health, Annual Research Meeting Most Outstanding Abstract (2008)
Alfred P.Sloan Industry Studies Fellow (2007)
Academy of Management, Healthcare Management Division,Outstanding Reviewer (2006)
Academy Health Dissertation Award (2004)
Accenture Award, California Management Review (2004)
Best Student Paper, Academy of Management, Operations Management Division (2003)
George S. Dively Dissertation Award, Harvard Business School (2003)
Nembhard, Ingrid and Tucker, Anita L. "Applying Organizational Learning Research to Accountable Care Organizations." Medical Care Research and Review (2016). (forthcoming)
Berry Jaeker, Jillian and Tucker, Anita L.. "Past the Point of Speeding Up: The Negative Effects of Workload Saturation on Efficiency and Quality." Management Science (2015). (forthcoming)
Aleda Roth, Anita Tucker, Sriram Venkataraman, Jon Chilingerian. "Being on the Productivity Frontier: Identifying “Triple Aim Performance Hospitals." February 2016.
Berry Jaeker, J., A.Tucker, M. H. Lee. "Disruptive justification: An empirical investigation of requiring justification in referrals.
Sarah Zhang, Anita Tucker, Justin Ren, Janelle Heineke, Amy McLaughlin, Aubrey Podell. "The impact of internal service quality on nurse inefficiency and medical errors.
Senot,C., A.Chandrasekaran, P.T.Ward, A.Tucker, S. Moffatt-Bruce. "The impact of combining conformance and experiential quality on hospitals’ readmissions and cost performance." Management Science 62. 3 (2016): 829-848.
Tucker, Anita L. "The impact of workaround difficulty on frontline employees’ response to operational failures: A laboratory experiment on medication administration." Management Science 62. 4 (2016): 1124-1144.
Hummy Song, Anita Tucker, Karen Murrell, David Vinson. "Public Relative Performance Feedback in Complex Service Systems: Improving Productivity through the Adoption of Best Practices (revise and resubmit at Management Science)." October 6, 2015.
Singer, Sara J. and Tucker, Anita L. "The evolving literature on safety walkrounds: Emerging themes and practical messages." BMJ Quality and Safety 23. 10 (2015): 789-800.
Song,H., A.Tucker, K.Morrell. "The diseconomies of queue pooling: An empirical investigation of emergency department length of stay." Management Science 61. 12 (2015): 3032-3053.
Tucker, Anita L. and Cindy Lefton. "The Dressing Change Game." INFORMS Transactions on Education 15. 2 (2015): 188-196.
Tucker, Anita L. and Singer, Sara J. "The effectiveness of Management-By-Walking-Around: A randomized field study." Production and Operations Management 24. 2 (2015): 253-271.
Tucker, Anita L., Heisler, W. Scott and Janisse, Laura D. "Designed for workarounds: A qualitative study of the causes of operational failures in hospitals." The Permanente Journal 18. 3 (2014): 33-41.
Nembhard, Ingrid and Tucker, Anita L. "Deliberate learning to improve performance in dynamic service settings: evidence from hospital intensive care units." Organization Science 22. 4 (2011): 907-922.
Tucker, Anita L.; Singer, Sara; Hayes, Jennifer and Falwell, Alyson. "Front-line staff perspectives on opportunities for improving the safety and efficiency of hospital work systems." Health Services Research 43. 5 (2008): 1807-1829.
Tucker, Anita L.. "An empirical study of system improvement by frontline employees in hospital units." Manufacturing & Service Operations Management 9. 4 (2007): 492-505.
Tucker, Anita L.; Nembhard, Ingrid and Edmondson, Amy. "Implementing new practices: An empirical study of organizational learning in hospital intensive care units." Management Science 53. 6 (2007): 894-907.
Tucker, Anita L. and Spear, Steven. "Operational failures and interruptions in hospital nursing." Health Services Research 41. 3 (2006): 643-662.
Tucker, Anita L.. "The impact of operational failures on hospital nurses and their patients." Journal of Operations Management 22. 2 (2004): 151-169.
Tucker, Anita L. and Edmondson, Amy. "Why hospitals don’t learn from failures: Organizational and psychological dynamics that inhibit system change." California Management Review 45. 2 (2003): 1-18.
Tucker, Anita L. and Edmondson, Amy. "Managing routine exceptions: A model of nurse problem solving behavior." Advances in Health Care Management 3. (2002): 87-113.
Tucker, Anita L., Edmondson, Amy, and Spear, Steve. "When problem solving prevents organizational learning." Journal of Organizational Change Management 15. 2 (2002): 122-137.