John D.C. Little

John D.C. Little

Past Awards

ISMS Fellow Award: Awardee(s)

INFORMS Elected Fellows: Awardee(s)

Saul Gass Expository Writing Award: Winner(s)

The winner of the 2000 Expository Writing Award is John D.C. Little. He has published articles of exemplary expositional character for over thirty-five years. He has a gift for explaining relatively complex topics in a understandable way, in areas ranging from marketing, queuing and optimization to management practice and the use of information technology. Sometimes in single-authored papers, often in collaboration with others, his attention to clarity and style in technical and motivation content is a standard for the profession.

Although this award recognizes the quality of writing in Little’s entire corpus of over 60 published papers, we single out here some of the more exceptional ones: - "Integrated Measures of Sales, Merchandising and Distribution," International Journal of Marketing Research (1998): dealing with the process of aggregating store sales and promotion data.

  • "When and What to Buy: a Nested Logit Model of Coffee Purchase" (with P. Guadagni), Journal of Finance (1998): analyzing whether or not a purchase is made in the brand category.
  • "Tautologies, Models and Theories: Can We Find ‘Laws’ of Manufacturing?" IIE Transactions (1992): posing the question as to whether there actually do exist "laws" of manufacturing (he modestly suggests here that Little’s Law is not really an example since he refers to it as a tautology).
  • "A Logit Model of Brand Choice Calibrated on Scanner Data" (with P. Guadagni), Marketing Science (1983): including a ne plus ultra explanation of what a logit model is (and is not). - "A Media Planning Calculus" (with L. Lodish), Operations Research (1969): describing an on-line computer system for scheduling advertising media. The discussion of the weakness of the optimization model is a particularly elegant piece of writing.
  • "Managers and Models: The Concept of a decision Calculus," Management Science (1970): appealing to analysts construct models that are move that are more useable (hence used) by managers.

To quote from this last paper "Managers analyze problems on the basis of differences or changes in situations. Scientists look for similarities or common elements".

The Award Committee unanimously agrees that the similarities and common elements of John D. C. Little’s technical writing, and its accessibility and appeal to the INFORMS readership, are deserving of recognition by receipt of this award.

George E. Kimball Medal: Awardee(s)
Philip McCord Morse Lectureship Award: Winner(s)