Peter T. Ward

Peter Ward is a professor of operations management and holds the Richard M. Ross Chair in Management at Fisher, where he also serves as the chair of the Management Sciences department and academic director of the Master of Business Operational Excellence program. He arrived at Ohio State in 1988 after obtaining his doctoral degree following a career in industry that included stints at Wang Laboratories and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Dr. Ward participates frequently in executive education programs and has developed several successful programs in lean management. He is the first president of the Lean Education Academic Network (LEAN), a global community of university educators dedicated to teaching systems thinking in universities. Dr. Ward also serves as co-director of Fisher’s Center for Operational Excellence, a consortium of more than 30 companies dedicated to excellence and thought leadership in operations.  He has served as a member of the advisory board of Ford Motor Company's Lean Resource Center and as a judge for Industry Week's America's Best Plants Program.  He also has been appointed the Otto Mønsted Guest Professor at the Technical University of Denmark.  Peter has served as a consultant to a number of leading corporations.  He currently serves on the boards of the Lean Enterprise Institute (LEI) and the Production and Operations Management Society (POMS).

Dr. Ward's research has resulted in numerous articles which have appeared in leading operations management journals and he has been recognized with a number of awards, including the 2007 distinguished operations management scholar from the Academy of Management, Shingo Prize for research in 2004, and Fisher’s Pace Setters Research Award in 2003.  He is associate editor for Journal of Operations Management and Decision Sciences Journal and senior editor for Production and Operations Management Journal.  His research focuses gaining competitive advantage through operations.

Areas of Expertise

  • Operations strategy
  • Managing technology
  • Reengineering operations
  • Lean manufacturing
  • Benchmarking


  • DBA, Boston University
  • MSBA, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • BBA, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

MBOE: Introduction to Operational Excellence

In this module, students develop the ability to see a problem, formulate a problem statement and describe a current state, and gain an appreciation that a holistic system is required to sustain change.



Published Articles

  • Gopesh Anand, Peter T. Ward, and Mohan Tatikonda, “Role of Explicit and Tacit Knowledge in Six Sigma Projects: An Empirical Examination of Differential Project Success,” Journal of Operations Management 28, no. 4 no. 2010): 303-315.
  • Gopesh Anand, Peter T. Ward, Mohan Tatikonda, and David Schilling, “Dynamic Capabilities Through Continuous Improvement Infrastructure,” Journal of Operations Management 27, no. 6, no. 2009): 444-461.
  • Vinod Singhal, B.B. Flynn, P.T. Ward, A.V. Roth, and V. Guar, “Empirical Elephants—Why Multiple Methods are Essential to Quality Research in Operations and Supply Chain Management,” Journal of Operations Management 26 no. 2008): 337-348.
  • Peter T. Ward, John McCreery, and Gopesh Anand, “Business Strategies and Manufacturing Decisions: An Empirical Examination of Linkages,” International Journal of Operations and Production Management 27, no. 9 no. 2007): 951-973.
  • Rachna Shah and Peter T. Ward, “Defining and Developing Measures of Lean Production,” Journal of Operations Management 25 no. 2007): 785-805.
  • Peter T. Ward and Honggeng Zhou, “Impact of Information Technology Integration and Lean/Just-in-Time Practices on Lead-Time Performance,” Decision Sciences 37, no. 2 no. 2006): 177-203.
  • Eric O. Olsen and Peter T. Ward, “Performance Measurement System Simplicity,” International Journal of Manufacturing Technology and Management 8, no. 4 no. 2006): 330-354.
  • Gopesh Anand and Peter T. Ward, “Fit, Flexibility and Performance in Manufacturing: Coping with Dynamic Environments,” Production and Operations Management Journal 13, no. 4 no. 2004): 369-385.
  • John McCreery, Lee Krajewski, G. Keong Leong, and Peter T. Ward, “Performance Implications of Assembly Work Teams,” Journal of Operations Management 22 no. 4), 2004, 387-412.
  • Susan M. Goldstein and Peter T. Ward, Performance Effects of Physicians’ Involvement in Hospital Strategic Decisions,” Journal of Service Research 6 no. 4 (2004): 361-372.
  • Thomas Christiansen, William L. Berry, Peter Bruun, and Peter T. Ward, “A Mapping of Competitive Priorities, Manufacturing Practices, and Operational Performance in Groups of Danish Manufacturing Companies,” International Journal of Operations and Production Management 23, no. 10 (2003): 1163-1183.  
  • Rachna Shah and Peter T. Ward, “Lean Manufacturing: Context, Practice Bundles, and Performance,” Journal of Operations Management 21, no. 2 (2003): 129-149.
  • Susan M. Meyer, Peter T. Ward, G. K Leong, and Tim Butler, “The Influence of Location, Strategy, and Operations Technology on Hospital Performance,” Journal of Operations Management 20, no. 1 (2002): 63-75.
  • Rachna Shah, Susan. M. Goldstein, and Peter T Ward, "Aligning Supply Chain Management Characteristics with Inter-Organizational Information System Types: An Exploratory Study," IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management 49, no. 3 (2002): 282-291.
  • Rebecca Duray, Peter T. Ward, Glenn Milligan, and William L. Berry, "Approaches to Mass Customization: Configurations and Empirical Validation," Journal of Operations Management 18 no. 6 (2000): 605-625.
  • Peter T. Ward and Rebecca Duray, "Manufacturing Strategy in Context: Environment, Competitive Strategy and Manufacturing Strategy," Journal of Operations Management 18, no. 1 (2000): 123-138.         
  • Peter T. Ward, John K. McCreery, Larry P. Rizman, and Deven Sharma, "Competitive Priorities in Operations Management," Decision Sciences 29. no. 4 (1998): 1035-1046.
  • Peter T. Ward, James E. Storbeck, Stephen L. Mangum, and Patricia E. Byrnes, "An Analysis of Staffing Efficiency in U. S. Manufacturing: 1983 and 1989," Annals of Operations Research (1997).
  • Kenneth K. Boyer, G. Keong Leong, Peter T. Ward, and Lee J. Krajewski, "Unlocking the Potential of Advanced Manufacturing Technologies," Journal of Operations Management 15, no. 4 (1997): 331-347.
  • John Ettlie and Peter T. Ward, "U.S. Manufacturing in the Early 1990s: The Chase and the Challenge," Business Strategy Review 8, no. 4 (1997): 53-59.
  • Kenneth K. Boyer, Peter T. Ward, and G. Keong Leong, "Approaches to the Factory of the Future: An Empirical Taxonomy," Journal of Operations Management 14, no. 4 (1996).
  • Peter T. Ward, Deborah J. Bickford, and G. Keong Leong, "Configurations of Manufacturing Strategy, Business Strategy, Environment and Structure," Journal of Management 22, no. 4 (1996): 595-623.           
  • Peter T. Ward, Rebecca Duray, G. Keong Leong, and Chee-Chuong Sum, "Business Environment, Operations Strategy, and Performance: An Empirical Study of Singapore Manufacturers," Journal of Operations Management 13, no. 2 (1995): 99-115.
  • G. Keong Leong and Peter T. Ward, "The 6 P's of Manufacturing Strategy," International Journal of Operations and Production Management 15, no. 12 (1995): 32-45.
  • Peter T. Ward, G. Keong Leong, and Kenneth K. Boyer, "Manufacturing Proactiveness and Performance," Decision Sciences 25, no. 3 (1994): 337-358.
  • Jim Hutchison, G. Keong Leong, and Peter T. Ward, "Improving Delivery Performance in Gear Manufacturing at Jeffrey Division of Dresser Industries," Interfaces 23, no. 2 (1993): 69-83.
  • Peter T. Ward, Andrew L. Betz, and Deborah J. Bickford, "Overhead Surgery or Media Hyperbole? An Examination of Manufacturing Employment Structure in High and Low Tech Industries, 1983 and 1989," Journal of High Technology Management Research 4, no. 1 (1993): 95-110.
  • Peter T. Ward, Paul D. Berger, Jeffrey G. Miller, and Stephen R. Rosenthal, "Manufacturing Process Technology and Support Staff Composition: An Empirical View of Industry Evidence," Production and Operations Management 1, no. 1 (1992): 5-21.
  • Jim Hutchison, G. Keong Leong, David L. Snyder, and Peter T. Ward, "Scheduling Approaches for Random Job Shop Flexible Manufacturing Systems," International Journal of Production Research 29, no. 5 (1991): 1053-1057.
  • G. Keong Leong, David L. Snyder, and Peter T. Ward, "Research in the Process and Content of Manufacturing Strategy," International Journal of Management Science (OMEGA) 18, no. 3 (1990): 283-97.
  • Peter T. Ward, Review of Production Management Systems - A CIM Perspective, by J. Brown, J. Harhen and J. Shivnan, Journal of Engineering and Technology Management 7, no. 1 (1990): 73-75.
  • Peter T. Ward, Jeffrey G. Miller, and Thomas E. Vollmann, "Mapping Manufacturing Concerns and Action Plans," International Journal of Operations and Production Management 8, no. 6 (1988): 5-18.
  • Stephen R. Rosenthal and Peter T. Ward, "Technical CIM Issues: An Assessment for Management," CIM Review 2, no. 1 (1985): 42-49.               

Book Chapters

  • Peter T. Ward and Rachna Shah, "World Class Manufacturing - Best Versus Rest," America's Best Plants, John Sheridan, ed., Penton Publishing (1999).
  • John Ettlie and Peter T. Ward, "U.S. Manufacturing in the Early 1990s: The Chase and the Challenge," International Manufacturing Strategies: Context, Content and Change, Per Lindberg, Chris Voss, and Kathryn Blackmon, eds., Kluwer Academic Publishers (1997).
  • Peter T. Ward, "Manufacturing Process Choice," The Instant Access Guide to Manufacturing Strategy, Thomas F. Wallace, ed., Essex Junction, VT: Oliver Wight Publications (1994).
  • Peter T. Ward, G. Keong Leong, and David L. Snyder, "A Review of Research in the Process and Content of Manufacturing Strategy," Manufacturing Strategy: The Research Agenda for the Next Decade, J. Ettlie, M. Burstein, and A. Fiegenbaum, eds., Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers (1990).
  • Stephen R. Rosenthal and Peter T. Ward, "Key Managerial Roles in Controlling Progress Toward CIM," Manufacturing Research: Organizational and Institutional Issues, Arthur Gerstenfeld, et al., eds., Amsterdam: Elsevier Science Publishers (1986).


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