Decision Sciences Institute Relocates to Bauer College

Published on May 15, 2014

Professor Who Helped Organize Move Calls It ‘A Feather in Our Cap’

Bauer Professor E. Powell Robinson Jr., leads the Decision Sciences Institute, which Bauer College recently added to its portfolio of centers and institutes, a move that will establish the college as a leader in the field of decision sciences.

Bauer Professor E. Powell Robinson Jr., leads the Decision Sciences Institute, which Bauer College recently added to its portfolio of centers and institutes, a move that will establish the college as a leader in the field of decision sciences.

After 45 years at Georgia State University in Atlanta, the Decision Sciences Institute (DSI) has relocated to the C. T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston.

The move, which promises to make the college a leader in the field of decision sciences, was orchestrated in part by Bauer Professor E. Powell Robinson Jr., a long-time leader of the organization.

“This is exciting for us because it really puts Bauer on the international map as a leading institution that thinks very highly of academic societies, professional development, leadership and teaching — because that’s everything the institute is about,” Powell said. “So having DSI based at Bauer is really a nice feather in our cap, and it’s going to make a lot of our colleagues jealous.”

Powell, who teaches in Bauer’s Department of Decision & Information Sciences, was president of the DSI board from 2012 to 2013 and has been serving as interim executive director since June of last year.

With approximately 2,000 members on six continents, DSI is a premier professional academic society in the field of decision sciences. It holds conferences at the regional, national and international levels and publishes two academic journals (Decision Sciences and Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education) and an online publication (Decision Line).

The DIS board approved the move to Bauer College at its annual meeting in Baltimore in November. At that same gathering, the institute honored Robinson with the Dennis E. Grawoig Distinguished Service Award.

The award is named for the institute’s founder, who served as DSI’s executive director while chairing Georgia State’s Decision Sciences Department. When Grawoig retired in 1985, he was replaced by DSI staffer Carol Latta. When Latta passed away unexpectedly in June 2013, the DSI board appointed Robinson interim executive director.

Robinson said the board had been contemplating the need for a more strategic home base for some time. After Grawoig’s death, his department was dissolved, and engagement between GSU faculty and the institute dwindled.

After Latta’s death, the DSI put out a request for proposals to see if other universities were interested in housing it. Bauer College submitted a plan, endorsed by Dean Latha Ramchand and bolstered by the fact that the college has about 10 faculty members with strong ties to the institute.

“The president-elect came, toured our facility and talked to the dean,” Robinson said. “He went back very impressed and kind of took our banner back to his committee. Then at our meeting in Baltimore, the board unanimously voted to move DSI here.”

In March, Dana Evans was hired as the program director of DSI, and the institute moved into its new home office in the Bauer College of Business.

By Wendell Brock