News & Events

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