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Meet Anthony McCreery, Ivey PhD candidate

May 21, 2024

Anthony Mccreery

Anthony McCreery

Ivey’s PhD Program in Business Administration is a full-time research-based program designed to develop scholars and to place graduates at high-quality research universities around the world. Our PhD candidates are showcased at conferences around the world, and regularly featured in top-tier academic and industry publications.

To help you get to know them, we’ve asked them about their academic and personal interests.

Q&A with Anthony McCreery, MSc '19, PhD candidate

What is your background and what previous experience prepared you for this program?

I grew up in a small town not too far away from London, Ont. I started my academic journey at Western University in the Faculty of Engineering. After receiving my bachelor degree in civil engineering, I travelled across the street to pursue a Master of Science in Management (MSc) in Business Analytics at Ivey. After my masters program, I stayed on campus as a lecturer to teach a course called Business for Engineers. My academic and professional background centres around Western University and Ivey Business School, and now I’m happy to be back at Ivey in my first year of the PhD program in the Management Science discipline.

What attracted you to Ivey’s program?

My main motivation to pursue Ivey’s PhD program stemmed from the great experiences I had with the professors in the MSc program. It was very motivating to see the research output and wealth of knowledge within this group. After some conversations with my supervisor, Fredrik Odegaard, I knew a research path at Ivey would be a great fit.

What is your research focus?

My research centres on using optimization techniques to create improvements in logistics and supply networks. I’m interested in using mathematical models to uncover insights that lead to enhanced decision-making and increased resource utilization. Currently, I’m working on a facility location research project, but my goal is to learn more about predictive modelling and incorporate this into my research as well.

Why is that area appealing to you? What big problems/issues need to be addressed?

The overarching area of supply chain analytics is appealing due to the vast number of issues that arise with an increasingly global supply chain. As supply chains become more globalized, interconnected, and complex, and as data becomes more prevalent and available, the need for effective analytics becomes even more crucial. Using optimization techniques to solve supply chain problems is not only practically relevant research, but also offers the potential to create large improvements for businesses with just marginal changes in processes.

How do you see your research making an impact?

I hope the research I produce is of practical relevance for real-world companies and organizations. For this reason, I’m interested in empirically grounded research that uses real-world data to produce insights. In any future work I produce, I’d hope that my research doesn’t remain in a vacuum, but is adopted by organizations to improve their logistics or operations.

What previous experiences have prepared you for this?

In the Ivey MSc program and throughout my engineering undergraduate program, I took many statistics and data science classes. The MSc program paid particular attention to model-building, so I was exposed to many statistical coding languages like R and Python. From there I was fortunate enough to work as a data analyst for several companies in various industries, which allowed me to hone my programming skills, while gaining an understanding of how companies leverage data to make informed decisions.

Who have been your strongest influences in life?

I’ve had the good fortune of being surrounded by a huge network of kind and supportive colleagues throughout my academic journey. It may sound cliché, but my strongest influences in life have been my parents. They’ve taught me to work hard, persevere, and to not take life too seriously.

What might someone be surprised to know about you?

Some might be surprised to hear that, despite the rigour of the first-year PhD experience, I’ve managed to maintain a 1,400-day streak on Duolingo. Since the beginning of the pandemic, I’ve been trying to learn German, and it has been a slow process.

What is the most played song on your playlist as of now?

Oddly enough, I don’t have a playlist on any of my devices. I’ve fallen prey to the algorithm and listening to whatever music YouTube suggests. Right now, I’m listening to a lot of music from a Canadian producer named Kaytranada.

What is your best podcast recommendation?

I would recommend The New York Times' The Daily podcast series, and NPR’s Planet Money. Other podcasts come and go, but those two never seem to get old.