Faculty & Research

Robert D. Klassen

Robert D. Klassen

Professor, Operations Management


Contact Information


Robert is the Associate Dean, Faculty Development & Research and a Professor of Operations Management at Ivey Business School.

Robert's research interests focus on exploring the linkages between operations and the natural environment, including international operations. This research has emphasized, first, characterizing the pattern of investment in environmental technologies, and second, understanding both the antecedents and performance outcomes of these investments. His research has been published in Management Science, Journal of Operations Management, Academy of Management Journal, and Decision Sciences, among others. He is currently serving on the Editorial Review Board for the Journal of Operations Management. Robert was the Chair of the Operations Management division of the Academy of Management in 2001, and previously served as the Program Chair in 1999.

In addition to teaching the first-year operations management course in the MBA and EMBA programs, Robert has recently introduced a new course in Managing for Sustainable Development. He has also taught electives in the Developing and Managing Technology, Management of Services and Operations Strategy. He continues to actively develop new teaching materials, including over 20 cases and exercises in the area of operations strategy, process analysis, quality management and environmental management.


  • Operations Management, MBA and Executive MBA programs
  • Managing for Sustainable Development, MBA and undergraduate programs
  • Management of Technology, MBA and undergraduate programs

Selected Publications

  • Pagell, M., D. Johnston, A. Veltri, R.D. Klassen, and M. Biehl, 2013, “Is Safe Production an Oxymoron? Exploring How Firms Simultaneously Manage Safety and Operational Competitiveness,” forthcoming in Production and Operations Management.
  • Hajmohammad, S., Vachon, S., Klassen, R.D., Gavronski, I., 2013, “Lean Management and Supply Management: Their Role in Green Practices and Performance,” Journal of Cleaner Production, 39, 312-320.
  • Hora, M. and R.D. Klassen, 2013, “Learning From Others’ Misfortune: Factors Influencing Knowledge Acquisition To Reduce Operational Risk,” Journal of Operations Management, 31, 52-61.
  • Klassen, R.D. and A. Vereecke, 2012, “Social Issues in Supply Chains: Capabilities Link Responsibility, Risk (Opportunity) and Performance,” International Journal of Production Economics, 140, 103-115.
  • Gavronski, I., R.D. Klassen, S. Vachon, and L.F.M.D. Nascimento, 2012, “A Learning and Knowledge Approach to Sustainable Operations,” International Journal of Production Economics, 140, 183-192.
  • Simpson, D., D. Power, R.D. Klassen, 2012, “When One Size Does Not Fit All: A Problem of Fit Rather than Failure for Voluntary Management Standards,” Journal of Business Ethics, 110(1), 85-95.
  • Parmigiani, A., R.D. Klassen and M.V. Russo, 2011, “Efficiency Meets Accountability: Performance Implications of Supply Chain Configuration, Control and Capabilities,” Journal of Operations Management, 29(3), 212-223.

Research/Course Development

  • Sustainability (including both environmental and social issues) in operations management.
  • Green supply chains.
  • Developing and managing technology.
  • Ivey case writing: over 30 cases and notes.

Honours & Awards

  • Operations Management Distinguished Scholar Award, 2013, Academy of Management (Operations Management division).
  • Journal of Operations Management, 2012, “Top Cited Article 2007-2011” for Linton, J.D., R.D. Klassen and V. Jayaraman, “Sustainable Supply Chains: An Introduction,” 25(6), 1075-1082.
  • Wickham Skinner Teaching Achievement Award, 2009. Production and Operations Management Society.
  • Page Prize for Environmental Sustainability Curriculum, 2008. Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina.


  • Dofasco Inc., environmental engineer
  • Imperial Oil Ltd., technical services
  • Procter & Gamble Inc., product development



Research Links


Faculty Focus

Watch the latest episodes of our monthly Faculty podcast: