Will Ma

Will's picture 

Will Ma

Ph.D. Candidate, MIT Operations Research Center

Email: willma at mit dot edu

Update: I am graduating in July 2018. I will be a postdoctoral researcher based in the Google Cambridge office, and joining the Decision, Risk, and Operations division at Columbia Business School in July 2019.

Hi! I am a Ph.D. student in the MIT Operations Research Center. I have the pleasure of being advised by David Simchi-Levi. Broadly speaking, I am interested in data-driven revenue management, helping firms dynamically optimize their operational decisions based on real-time data. More specifically, I have been working on online matching and recommendation problems, learning and earning problems on Markov chains, as well as the usage of product bundling as a tool for demand learning.

I spent 2013-2015 as a co-founder of Lunarch Studios, the start-up that designed the strategy game Prismata. During those years, I had also been a research intern with the Ad Exchange team in Google New York, and a trading intern at Jane Street Capital.

I completed my undergraduate degree in 2010 from the University of Waterloo, majoring in Pure Mathematics and Combinatorics/Optimization. During that time, I competed in many international poker tournaments. I teach the poker class at MIT, which has recently been archived onto MIT OpenCourseWare.

Research Interests

Data-driven revenue management, online matching and recommendation, machine learning, e-commerce

Research Papers, 2015–  (reverse chronological order)

Research Papers, before 2015 (reverse chronological order)

Selected Ongoing Projects

  • Data-driven Promotion Planning with Multiple Forms of Cannibalization

    with Hanwei Li, David Simchi-Levi, Jinglong Zhao, and in partnership with a large beverage conglomerate

    (to be presented at the INFORMS Annual Meeting, 2017)

  • Predicting User Choice in Video Games

    with Arjun Khandelwal, David Simchi-Levi, and in partnership with Prismata

    (slides from Arjun Khandelwal's presentation at the INFORMS Revenue Management and Pricing (RMP) Conference, 2017)

  • Learning Demand from a Dataset containing Bundle Sales

    with David Simchi-Levi, and in partnership with B2W Digital