When Decision Sciences Institute (DSI) relocated to Bauer College in 2013, Funda Sahin, associate professor in the Department of Decision & Information Sciences (DISC), was at the helm.
Sahin has been a member of the international professional organization since she was a doctoral student, then served in various leadership capacities before being named 2016-2017 president.
In November, she was presented with the Dennis Grawoig Distinguished Service Award at DSI’s annual meeting. The honor is named for the Institute’s founder and recognizes “major service to the Institute over a significant period of years.” It is often bestowed on professionals much later in their careers.
The international professional organization consists of 1,400 academicians and practitioners on six continents who are interested in the development and application of quantitative and behavioral decision models. But DSI needed to realign organizationally so it could operate more strategically, said Sahin, the Supply Chain Management Doctoral Program Coordinator at Bauer.
“With any transition you have opportunities. We have been able to set a strategic direction for the organization and focus on how we can elevate the stature of the Institute, and its Journals.”
The Institute is known for its well-established Decision Sciences Journal and Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education.
Sahin has sought to broaden the influence and impact of DSI by emphasizing outreach to thought leaders from its multi-disciplinary core membership of experts in information systems, business analytics and supply chain.
“As scholars, we are the knowledge generators. DSI gives us an opportunity to create and share that knowledge with others. Reaching out to the larger crowd with the knowledge we create is very important, especially at a time when things are happening at a very fast pace,” Sahin said. “At the same time, at DSI, we continue to focus on our core competencies.”
As one of only five women presidents of the non-profit educational organization, created in 1969, Sahin has been a highly visible role model as efforts continue to bring more women into the male-dominated field.
Other Bauer faculty members have been instrumental in DSI’s growth. Professor Basheer Khumawala is a Fellow of the Institute, and Professor E. Powell Robinson served as the 2012-2013 DSI President, later as the DSI Interim Executive Director and was also honored with the Distinguished Service Award.
By Julie Bonnin