News & Events

Marshall in the Media: August 2020, Dean's Monthly Newsletter:

Linda Hagen's paper, "Pretty Healthy Food: How and When Aesthetics Enhance Perceived Healthiness," has been accepted for publication at the Journal of Marketing.

Gene Del Vecchio wrote in Forbes about Comcast 2Q earnings and why, despite the hit, the company's strategy suggests a bright future.  He also wrote in Forbes about Netflix earnings and their implication for the entertainment industry.

The San Diego Union-Tribune quoted Maria Rodas on ways consumers now communicate to brands.


Faculty Spotlight, August 2020: Miriam Burgos

When your peers on the faculty ask you to present on a topic, it's safe to say you know what you're talking about. 

 But Miriam Burgos was a little taken aback when another faculty member asked, following a Marketing Department meeting, if she could do a similar presentation to her children's school district in Manhattan Beach.  They, too, were suddenly being called on to teach exclusively online. And Burgos has extensive scholarly---and professional---experience in just this topic, which is why her department chair had asked her and three colleagues to present on the topic of online learning best practices.

"The Manhattan Beach teachers wanted a group session to discuss classroom-management techniques in Zoom that would lead to the best outcomes and the highest level of student engagement in a live, virtual classroom setting," Burgos says. "But K-12 is not my area of expertise."

Nevertheless, with just a few modifications to the points she shared with her MKT colleagues, she conducted a one-hour session for the teachers in late July. It was a hit, meaning it got teachers talking and excited about the possibilities of delivering excellent education online. 

"The whole thing was very productive," she says. "I was pleased to see so many K-12 teachers embracing the idea that online platforms can support the delivery of excellent educational experiences---a fact that is backed up by years of research."

Burgos is having a moment. She's long been a popular teacher, having been awarded four Golden Apple Awards, as voted on by her students.  But it's her ongoing work with online learning that is raising her profile.

Before entering academia Burgos worked in marketing for two multi-national consumer packaged goods companies. For nearly seven years, her work included leading virtual project teams across international borders for Procter & Gamble, an experience that would lead to her being pulled onto Marshall's first online MBA task force in 2013. In 2016, she was named the academic director for the Online MBA (OMBA) program. 

2012 was also the year she was awarded a grant from the USC Center for Scholarly Technology, to study the role of virtual learning in course continuity and emergency other words, what would happen, if, say, the unthinkable happened.

"As part of the study, I asked my students to imagine there had been an earthquake that forced the entire campus to switch to online learning for a period of two weeks, while the campus was assessed for seismic damage and safety," she says. "During this period, they were only allowed to work and meet virtually, and all classes were held synchronously using Adobe Connect."  

Burgos then surveyed students to gather data on the student experience; what factors made them feel connected to their classmates? Which online platforms worked best?

She is applying the results of her study, along with her OMBA experiences, to the upcoming Fall 2020 semester, which begins online in just a couple of weeks.

"Marshall is going into this well ahead of the curve," she says. "We have the advantage of already having world-class faculty and staff who are all deeply committed to student success in any environment, virtual or residential."

A graduate of Harvard and USC Marshall, where she earned her MBA, she discovered her true calling after getting her first taste of teaching while working as a graduate student assistant for Professor Rex Kovacevich over 15 years ago.

Burgos was born in Los Angeles, but spent her childhood in her parents' native Guatemala.  She lives in West Covina with her husband and daughter.


Assistant Professor of Marketing Maria Rodas was quoted in the San Diego Union-Tribune on new ways consumers communicate with brands.


The Nerves Have It

New research from USC Marshall's Deborah MacInnis, Charles L. and Ramona I. Hilliard Professor of Business Administration and professor of marketing, suggests that if you're nervous about whether that new product will work, you're more likely to buy it.


Adjunct Professor of Marketing Gene Del Vecchio wrote a column for Forbes questioning Disney's decision to run Hamilton as a movie on its Disney+ channel.


Marshall in the Media: July 2020, Dean's Monthly Newsletter:

Anthony Dukes' paper (with Yanhao Wei), "Cryptocurrency Adoption with Speculative Price Bubbles," has been accepted for publication at Marketing Science.

Lan Luo (Co-PI) and Davide Proserpio (Co-PI) received the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate Research Award ($10,000).

Davide Proserpio's paper (with K. Barron and E. Kung), "The Effect of Home-Sharing on House Prices and Rents: Evidence from Airbnb," has been accepted for publication at Marketing Science.

His paper (with F. Valsesia and J. Nunes), "The Positive Effect of Not Following Others on Social Media," has been accepted at the Journal of Marketing Research.

His paper (with F. Chen, X. Liu, I. Troncoso and F. Xiong), "Studying Product Competition Using Representation Learning," is in proceedings of the 43rd International ACM SIGIR Conference on Research and Development in Information Retrieval (SIGIR2020), Xian, China.

His paper, (with Uttara M. Ananthakrishnan and Siddhartha Sharma), "Does Quality Improve with Customer Voice? Evidence from the Hotel Industry," is in proceedings of the 21st ACM Conference on Economics and Computation (EC '21). This paper is the winner of the Exemplary Empirics Track Paper award.

Davide Proserpio and Lan Luo received the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate Research Award ($10,000).

Norbert Schwarz's paper (with C.Y. Zhang), "Truth From Familiar Turns of Phrase: Word and Number Collocations in the Corpus of Language Influence Acceptance of Novel Claims," was published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

His paper (with S. W. S. Lee and J. Huang), "Risk Overgeneralization in Times of a Contagious Disease Threat," has been published in Frontiers in Psychology.

Gerry Tellis co-chaired the first ISMS Day-long Webinar on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The conference had four 1-hour sessions each of 5 speakers, which attracted over 220 attendees.

Tellis also spearheaded the conversion of the 42nd Marketing Science Conference from onsite to a virtual platform. The conference had 11 simultaneous tracks, each of four sessions x 3 days, each session having 4 presenters. The conference attracted 700 attendees.



Tommy Talks presents talks by Marketing faculty:

USC Marshall faculty continue to offer deeper dives into the pandemic's effect on the economy, business and leadership.


Marshall in the Media: June 2020, Dean's Monthly Newsletter:

Assistant Professor of Marketing Kalinda Ukanwwas quoted by CNN on the shifting tastes of retail consumers in a story about the bankruptcy of JCPenney.

Adjunct Professor of Marketing Gene Del Vecchio was quoted by Dot.LA about Hollywood layoffs.

Assistant Professor of Clinical Marketing Lars Perner spoke to the Los Angeles Times about changes in consumer behavior and the plight of small, independent shops in Los Angeles.


Miriam Burgos won a Research, Teaching, Practice and Clinical Faculty Award, announced at the Spring 2020 Faculty Awards ceremony.

Kristin Diehl received the Dean's Award for Ph.D. Advisement at the Spring 2020 Faculty Awards ceremony.

Debbie MacInnis' paper, "Strong Anxiety Boosts New Product Adoption When Hope is Also Strong," has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Marketing.

Joe Priester's paper (with Monique Fleming), The Conceptualization and Measure of Creativity: Implications for Research in Marketing and Consumer Behavior," was accepted for publication in the Review of Marketing Research.

Davide Proserpio received the Dean's Award for Research Impact at the Spring 2020 Faculty Awards ceremony.

Norbert Schwarz's paper (with R. W. Smith and J. J. Chandler), "Uniformity: The Effects of Organizational Attire on Judgments and Attributions," has been published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology. Schwarz's paper (with I. K. Schneider and J. Stapels), "Too close to Call: The Spatial Distance Between Options Influences Choice Difficulty," has been published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 

His paper (with E. J. Newman, M.C Jalbert and D. P. Ly), "Truthiness, the Illusory Truth Effect, and The Role of Need for Cognition," has been published in Consciousness and Cognition. 

Gerry Tellis received the Dr. Jagdish Sheth Impact on Practice Award at the Spring 2020 Faculty Awards ceremony.

Therese Wilbur won a Research, Teaching, Practice and Clinical Faculty Award, announced at the Spring 2020 Faculty Awards ceremony.


Marshall in the Media: May 2020, Dean's Monthly Newsletter:

Joe Nunes' paper (with Monique Fleming), "The Conceptualization and Measure of Creativity: Implications for Research in Marketing and Consumer Behavior," was accepted for publication in the Review of Marketing Research.

Gerry Tellis' paper on "How Long Should Social Distancing Last" reached the top 10 of the SSRN charts on two categories: the SSRN Top 5 for the week, and the Top 10 in the SSRN USC Marshall Series for this year. The study has now achieved more than 15,000 abstract views in little over two weeks.

Kalinda Ukanwa's dissertation, "Reputation Dynamics in Marketing Contexts --- featured Essay: Discrimination in Service," was selected as one of three finalists for the 2020 AMS Mary Kay Dissertation Award Track.

Sha Yang will join the Dean's Cabinet as Vice Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs beginning July 1, 2020. Yang also received a Golden Apple award for elective teaching.

Business Insider quoted Gene Del Vecchio about whether Hollywood talent agencies will look as attractive to private equity groups after the pandemic. 


Dear Marshall Community:

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Sha Yang to the position of Vice Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs effective July 1, 2020. She will have responsibility over all faculty related matters, working closely with department chairs and overseeing all faculty personnel actions including recruitment and reviews for reappointment and promotion.

Sha joined the USC Marshall School as a Professor of Marketing in 2010. She was appointed as the Ernst Hahn Professor of Marketing in 2017. Prior to her appointment to our faculty, she was an Associate Professor (2008-2010) and Assistant Professor (2002-2008) at Stern NYU, and an Assistant Professor at UC-Riverside (2000-2002). Sha received her PhD degree (in Marketing) from Ohio State University.

Sha’s research expertise falls in the area of empirical modeling of consumer choice behavior and market competition. She is widely known in marketing for developing new methods to study complex interactions among consumers and firms using the Bayesian perspective.  Sha is also known for her pioneering work in sponsored search advertising and has also published other influential research related to consumer price bargaining, TV viewing, and user generated content. Her stature has been recognized by her appointment as an associate editor to Marketing Science and Journal of Marketing, two of the premier journals in the field. In summary Sha is a productive and highly recognized scholar. Since joining Marshall, she has successfully taught classes at the undergraduate, MBA and PhD level.  Sha is also an excellent mentor of PhD students. Over the years Sha has placed students at Cornell, UNC-Chapel Hill and University of Utah among others.

Please join us in thanking Sha for agreeing to serve her school in this important administrative capacity.  We could not be more excited to have her joining our senior leadership team.

Stepping down from her current role as Vice Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs is Nandini Rajagopalan.  We are deeply indebted to Nandini for serving during the most turbulent three year period one could imagine. During her term Nandini supervised 32 promotion cases, including 16 female faculty, hired 20 tenure track and 10 RTPC faculty, launched several new faculty initiatives, handled appointments for 6 department chairs, and participated in our successful 2018 AACSB reaccreditation. Somehow she also managed to find time to teach in our OMBA program, with stellar ratings from her students. Nandini is a Marshall “lifer” and we are very grateful for all she has done, and will continue to do, for the school.

 Best regards,

Gareth M. James                                                              Geoffrey Garrett
Interim Dean                                                            Incoming Dean


Professor of Marketing Gerry Tellis is quoted in the South China Morning Post about his research into factors that determine how long countries must stay on lockdown to defeat the coronavirus. Read the clip.

Professor of Marketing and Department Chair Anthony Dukes was quoted in a USC News story, picked up by Medical XPress, on the increase in alcohol sales during the pandemic shutdown. Read the clip

Adjunct Professor of Marketing Gene Del Vecchio wrote a column for Forbes on how the studios might be able to save movie theaters. Read the clip. (04/2020)

How Long Will Quarantine Last?

New research from USC Marshall's Gerry Tellis, Neely Chair of American Enterprise and professor of marketing, and his co-researchers, suggests between three to six weeks. At least. (04/2020)


Dear FT MKT Colleagues,

I was just informed that Kalinda Ukanwa’s dissertation proposal, “Reputation Dynamics in Marketing Contexts--Featured Essay: Discrimination in Service” has been selected as one of three finalists for 2020 AMS Mary Kay Dissertation Award Track.

This achievement is one of most competitive and reputed competitions that attracts quality submissions from all over the world. Please join me in saying “Congratulations Kalinda!”

Anthony Dukes | Professor of Marketing and Department Chair | Marshall School of Business | University of Southern California


Hi everybody,

Please join us in congratulating Jennifer D'Angelo, who successfully defended her dissertation today.

Many thanks to her committee, Cheryl Wakslak from MOR and Lan Luo and Joe Nunes for the thoughtful advice and comments along the way.


Congratulations Jenn!

Lisa Cavanaugh & Kristin Diehl




Hi everyone

Amy Pei has successfully defended her dissertation yesterday.  We are going to delay the in-person celebration until a little later.

Congrats to Amy and to her committee and to the department!



Dina  Mayzlin


Debbie MacInnis Lifetime Achievement Award

Dear MKT Colleagues,

I am so pleased to announce that our Debbie MacInnis has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Marketing Association’s Consumer Behavior Special Interest Group.

I hope you’ll join me in congratulating Debbie. It is truly fitting that she wins this award given her career’s contributions to the field – and makes USC Marketing look SO good!

- Anthony

Professor of Marketing and Department Chair                                                                                 

Marshall School of Business                                       

University of Southern California


Marshall in the Media: January 2020, Dean's Monthly Newsletter:

Adweek featured research by Maria Rodas (paywall).

CNBC quoted Lars Perner (among many other outlets) about holiday shopping trends.  

AdAge quoted Gene Del Vecchio about Disney (hard paywall).  

Marketplace quoted Kalinda Ukanwa on why there is a market for year-round Christmas stores.

The New Yorker published an article citing Wendy Wood's new book on habits.  


Faculty Research (Dean's Monthly: January 2020)

Norbert Schwarz

Norbert Schwarz's paper (with Ryan Hauser), "Score Blending: How Scale Response Grouping Biases Perceived Standing," was published in the Journal of Behavioral Decision Making.

His paper (with D. J. Hauser), "The War on Prevention II: Battle Metaphors Undermine Cancer Treatment and Do Not Increase Vigilance," was published in Health Communication.

Gerard J. Tellis

Gerry Tellis won the AMA-Irwin-McGraw-Hill Distinguished Marketing Educator Award for distinguished service and outstanding contributions in marketing education.

 Kalinda Ukanwa

Kalinda Ukanwa was named a finalist for the Hohn Howard/AMA Dissertation Award.


Dean's Monthly, January 2020 Faculty Profile: Maria Rodas

When Maria Rodas graduated from Harvard with a BA in economics in the early 2000s, her plan was to go into marketing, like her father, a successful marketer in Guatemala. She knew she wanted an MBA, which she earned from Columbia University in 2007, but that was the extent of her vision for academic life.


Nonetheless, in July, Rodas joined the faculty at USC Marshall as assistant professor of marketing after receiving her Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. Her decision leverages her corporate experience at the top of multicultural marketing at big-league firms like General Mills and Wrigley, with her drive to understand more deeply why consumers behave in certain ways.


"There was no time or resources to really explore the drivers of consumer behavior when I was working in corporate America," Rodas said. "I became frustrated because I wanted to understand not only what consumers do and think, but also why they behave and think that way."


Couple that with a corporate career path that didn't appeal to Rodas. "At the beginning of my career I was doing a lot of work with consumers," she said. "However, as I got promoted, I started doing less with consumers and more with the business aspect of brands, which I didn't find as exciting. And looking forward, I realized I didn't want the job of my boss' boss, who dealt even less with consumers."


As she thought about making a change, Rodas asked herself, "Who has an amazing job?" The answer:  her professors at Columbia. "That's why I went into academia," Rodas said.


At Marshall, Rodas is largely focused on branding, and she said one of the reasons she was attracted to Marshall was the opportunity to work with brand experts, marketing professors C.W. Park, Debbie MacInnis and Valerie Folkes.


But Rodas is interested in filling a hole she has found in the marketing literature: brand strategies that are effective with multicultural consumers. "A lot of my past work was engaging with multicultural consumers, such as Hispanics or African Americans," she said. "When I entered academia, I noticed that most of the cross-cultural work has looked at either monocultural consumers across cultures, or has studied the effect of bilingual communications. Yet with globalization, we're becoming more and more multicultural, and multicultural consumers represent a big opportunity for companies. We need to do more work in understanding how marketers can win with multicultural consumers."


Rodas has begun to plumb this field. She is currently studying how to build brands that connect to a multicultural audience. She said the Marshall marketing department and Los Angeles are great partners in her effort.


"It's much easier to conduct multicultural research in such a diverse city," she said. "Plus, I love being able to speak Spanish every day. It's almost like I'm back in Guatemala. I also love the marketing department; it's fantastic. My colleagues are people I've admired since my graduate school days. Coming here is like a dream come true."



From Dr. Kristin Diehl and Dr. Lisa Cavanaugh:

Hi everybody,

We just wanted to share the exciting news that, after covering the air space from Hawaii to London this fall,  Jennifer D'Angelo has decided to join the marketing department at the Neeley School of Business at TCU.

In recent years, TCU has consistently hired exciting junior faculty including two assistant professors in CB this year(Jenn and Gretchen Wilroy from Penn State – a student of Meg Meloy). So Jenn will be in great company and they will have access to a large subject pool (it’s Texas after all) that I am sure will help Jenn continue her exciting research.

Thanks everybody who took part in her journey. Not just the committee (many thanks to Lan Luo, Joe Nunes, and Cheryl Wakslak for their thoughtful comments and continuous advise) but also everybody else in the department who was involved along the way. There are so many points where you have helped from teaching Ph.D. classes and pro-seminar, to providing feedback on presentations and papers, supporting Jenn’s own teaching, and doing mock-interviews. All very much appreciated.


Please join us in congratulating Jenn on a job market well done and to John, her husband, for supporting her and being a movable spouse.


Kristin and Lisa

(November 22, 2019)



Marshall Monthly: October 2019

Gil Appel 

Gil Appel's paper (with Lauren Grewal, Rhonda Hadi and Andrew Stephen), "The Future of Social Media in Marketing," was accepted for publication in the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. 

Appel's paper (with Yaniv Shani, Shai Danziger and Ron Shachar), "When and Why Consumers 'Accidentally' Endanger Their Products," was accepted for publication in Management Science.

Appel's paper, "On the Monetary Impact of Fashion Design Piracy," was a finalist for the 2018 International Journal of Research in Marketing Best Article Award.

Appel's paper, "On the Monetization of Mobile Apps," was published in the International Journal of Research in Marketing.

Gil Appel and Cheryl Wakslak (MOR)

Gil Appel and Cheryl Wakslak's paper (with MOR alumni Priyanka Joshi, SF State and Laura Huang, HBS), "Gender Differences in Communicative Abstraction," was published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

Maria Rodas

Maria Rodas' paper (with Deborah R. John), "The Secrecy Effect: Secret Consumption Increases Women's Product Evaluations and Choice," was accepted for publication in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Gerry Tellis

Gerry Tellis received three awards at the AMA Educators Conference in Chicago in August: 2019 JMR O'Dell Award for best long-term contribution to Marketing Research, 2019 AMA Churchill Award for Lifetime Contributions for Marketing Research, and 2019 AMA Global SIG Excellence in Global Research Award.


Marshall in the Media

September media highlights:      

Beauty Independent, a website covering the beauty industry, quoted Kalinda Ukanwa on marketing beauty products through a recession.

LA Business Journal quoted Gene Del Vecchio on Warner Media (paywall).

(October 2019)

Marshall Monthly: September 2019

Lan Luo

Lan Luo won the 2019 Paul E. Green Award (finalist) for an article published in the Journal of Marketing Research that demonstrated the most potential to contribute significantly to the practice of marketing research. 


Marshall in the Media

August media highlights:      

The Hill published an op-ed by Gerry Tellis on the paradox of superstar performers.

The Los Angeles Times quoted Gene Del Vecchio on what's next after Universal canceled the controversial movie, "The Hunt."

The Street quoted Kalinda Ukanwa on how ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft might fare in a recession.

CNN quoted Ira Kalb on why the FBI nicknames criminals for the media.

REI featured research by Kristin Diehl in its video about whether social media-driven photography is ruining the outdoors.

(September 2019)


Office of the Vice Dean: Nandini Rajagopalan

Dear Marshall Community,

I am pleased to announce that Arianna Uhalde will be joining us as a full-time Assistant Professor of Clinical Marketing starting August 16, 2019.

Arianna earned her Ph.D. in Marketing (with an emphasis in Consumer Behavior) from Marshall School of Business in 2017, and has been teaching as an Adjunct Professor of Marketing at Marshall since Fall 2017. She has taught several Consumer Behavior and Advertising & Promotion Management classes, and recently developed a class called Happiness and Wellbeing in the Marketplace, which she will teach for the first time during Fall 2019.

Arianna is also a researcher with USC’s Performance Science Institute, helping develop projects and programming related to the psychological determinants of peak performance. Her work at the PSI reflects her passion for understanding individuals’ motivation and performance (as well as burnout, performance-related mental health challenges, and substance abuse).    

With expertise in market research and consumer insights, Arianna has advised various companies in the L.A. area, including Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC), MORE Labs, and The Honest Company.

Arianna previously earned B.A. degrees in Psychology and Public Policy Studies, as well as a certificate in Markets & Management Studies, from Duke University.

Please join me in welcoming Arianna to our community.


Nandini Rajagopalan

Vice Dean for Faculty and Academic Affairs
Joseph A. DeBell Chair in Business Administration
Professor of Management and Organization
Marshall School of Business
University of Southern California