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As a member of the Chicago Booth faculty, Willard I. Zangwill conducts research in the areas of management science, operations strategy, innovation, new product development, best practices, and executive-level business decisions. His recent research led him to create a number of new algorithms and processes to help make better decisions, combining concepts from Six Sigma, manufacturing excellence, and new research findings on how the mind obtains insights and creates new ideas. He has developed software for decision making that has been widely applied in business and for homeland security.

Zangwill has held positions at several prominent organizations, including the University of California at Berkeley; the US Department of Health, Education, and Welfare; the US Office of Education; and the University of Illinois, where he was chairman of the Management Science Group. He also has worked as a consultant for General Electric, the RAND Corporation, IBM, Ameritech, and Honda.

He is the author of four books and more than 50 published papers on the theory and application of operations research and management science, concentrating on the areas of mathematical programming and production analysis. Zangwill was also the recipient of a Ford Foundation Faculty Fellowship to write a book on nonlinear programming. He has received an Office of Naval Research grant as a principal investigator into problems of logistics and statistics.

Zangwill graduated from Columbia University with a bachelor's degree magna cum laude in physics. He continued his education at Stanford University, where he earned a master's degree in statistics and a PhD in operations research. During his time at Stanford, Zangwill was awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship.