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Carnegie Mellon Heinz School Policy Management Information Technology
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Michael D. Smith 

Michael D. Smith  

Heinz Career Development Associate Professor of Information Technology and Marketing
Ph.D., Management Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Professional Background

Michael D. Smith is the Heinz Career Development Associate Professor of Information Technology and Marketing at Carnegie Mellon University. He received his Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering (summa cum laude) and his Masters of Science in Telecommunications Science from the University of Maryland, and received his Ph.D. in Management Science and Information Technology from the Sloan School of Management at MIT. He is on the editorial board of three leading journals and has served as the co-chair of the Workshop on Information Systems and Economics.

Prior to receiving his Ph.D., Dr. Smith worked extensively in the telecommunications and information systems industries, first with GTE in their laboratories, telecommunications, and satellite business units and subsequently with Booz Allen and Hamilton as a member of their telecommunications client service team. While with GTE, Dr. Smith was awarded a patent for research applying fuzzy logic and artificial intelligence techniques to the design and operation of telecommunications networks.


Smith has received the prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER award for his research into designing efficient information exchanges. He has also received research awards from the Networks, Electronic Commerce, and Telecommunications Institute, the Marketing Science Institute, the Carnegie Bosch Institute, and

With respect to his teaching, Smith received the Master’s of Information Systems Management program’s top award for teaching excellence in 2004, and was nominated for this award again in 2005. He also received the Outstanding Faculty Award from Carnegie Mellon’s chapter of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars in 2002.


Smith's research relates to analyzing and designing efficient information exchanges. Specific research topics include the welfare impacts of increased product variety in online markets (a.k.a. “The Long Tail”), consumer response to online brands, price dispersion in online markets, piracy, and the design of peer-to-peer networks. His research in this area has been published in leading management science, economics, and marketing journals including Management Science, Information Systems Research, The Journal of Industrial Economics, and The Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science.


Smith’s teaching focuses on how information technology can change business practices and industry structure and competition. He currently teaches the Masters of Information System’s capstone course in Digital Transformation, elective courses in Electronic Commerce Marketing, and Advanced Topics in Interactive Marketing. In the past he has taught a Ph.D. seminar in Analyzing and Designing Efficient Electronic Markets and an elective course on Electronic Commerce Policy.

Community Service

Smith currently serves on the editorial boards of Management Science, Information Systems Research, Decision Support Systems, and I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society. He also served as the co-chair of the Workshop on Information Systems and Economics (WISE) and has chaired tracks on copyright issues and peer-to-peer networks at the INFORMS Annual Meetings and the Americas Conference on Information Systems. His research on market efficiency and increased product variety (a.k.a. “The Long Tail”) in Internet markets has received extensive coverage in leading professional journals including The Harvard Business Review and The Sloan Management Review and press outlets including The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Wired and Business Week.

Selected Publications

Ghose, Anindya, Michael D. Smith, Rahul Telang. 2006. Internet Exchanges for Used Books: An Empirical Analysis of Product Cannibalization and Welfare Impact. Information Systems Research, 17(1) 3-19.

Brynjolfsson, Erik, Yu “Jeffrey” Hu, Michael D. Smith. 2006. From Niches to Riches: The Anatomy of the Long Tail. Sloan Management Review, 47(4 Summer) 67-71.

Asvanund, Atip, Karen Clay, Ramayya Krishnan, Michael D. Smith. 2004. An Empirical Analysis of Network Externalities in Peer-To-Peer Music Sharing Networks. Information Systems Research, 15(2) 155-174.

Brynjolfsson, Erik, Yu Hu, Michael Smith. 2003. Consumer Surplus in the Digital Economy: Estimating the Value of Increased Product Variety. Management Science, 49(11) 1580-1596.

Krishnan, Ramayya, Michael D. Smith, Rahul Telang. 2003. The Economics of Peer-To-Peer Networks. Journal of Information Technology Theory and Applications, 5(3) 31-44.

Smith, Michael. 2002. The Impact of Shopbots on Electronic Markets. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science 30(4) 442-450.

Smith, Michael, Erik Brynjolfsson. 2001. Customer Decision Making at an Internet Shopbot: Brand Still Matters. The Journal of Industrial Economics 49(4) 541-558.

Smith, Michael, Joseph Bailey, Erik Brynjolfsson. 2000. Understanding Digital Markets: Review and Assessment, Brynjolfsson and Kahin, eds. Understanding the Digital Economy, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 99-136.

Brynjolfsson, Erik, Michael Smith. 2000. Frictionless Commerce? A Comparison of Internet and Conventional Retailers. Management Science 46(4) 563-585.

Additional Web Resources

Smith’s personal web page:
Smith’s research page contains a full list of his working papers: