Michael Braun

Associate Professor
Marilyn and Leo F. Corrigan Research Professor

PhD, University of Pennsylvania


View CV
  • Bio

    Michael Braun, associate professor of marketing and Marilyn and Leo F. Corrigan Research Professor at the Cox School of Business, comes to Southern Methodist University (SMU) in 2013 after seven years on the faculty of the MIT Sloan School of Management.  The core of his research is the statistical analysis of large and complex customer databases.  He has written on, spoken on, and taught about management topics such as sales forecasting, customer retention and valuation, marketing ROI, social networking models, segmentation and targeting strategies, online advertising, and insurance decisions.  Professor Braun’s work has been published in top academic publications such as Marketing Science, Management Science, and the Journal of the American Statistical Association, and he is a member of the Marketing Science Editorial Review Board.  He has held several leadership positions for the American Statistical Association's Section on Statistics and Marketing, including section chair in 2011 and program chair in 2009, 2013 and 2015.  In addition, he is the author of four software packages for the R statistical computing language.

    Professor Braun’s teaching interests are to train the next generation of business leaders on how to analyze, interpret, and use marketing data to address real-world managerial problems.  He takes a hands-on approach with his classes, believing that managers cannot act effectively on the volumes of customer data that they collect, unless they master a foundational set of quantitative, statistical tools.  He teaches the core Marketing Management and Managerial Statistics courses in the full-time and professional MBA programs, as well as Predictive Analytics in the MS in Business Analytics program.

    Michael Braun earned his PhD from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.  He holds an AB with honors in economics from Princeton University, and an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University.  Before entering academia, he worked on the development and deployment of broadband Internet products for such companies as Comcast, Marcus Cable, and Charter Communications.  From 1999 to 2002, he was vice president for Global Affiliate Operations of Chello Broadband, the Amsterdam-based Internet arm of United Pan-Europe Communications.  He also worked as a production assistant at ESPN, and as a researcher for NBC at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. 

  • Teaching

    MAST 6201 Managerial Statistics (MBA)
    MKTG 6201 Marketing Management (MBA)
    MAST 6252 Applied Predictive Analytics II (MSBA)
  • Research

    Customer loyalty and retention
    Estimating customer lifetime value
    Advertising targeting and response
    Bayesian methods for marketing research
    Computation for customer analytics


    Working Papers

    Michael Braun (2018) sparseMVN: An R Package for Multivariate Normal Functions with Sparse Covariance and Precision Matrices.  https://CRAN.R-project.org/package=sparseMVN .
  • Select Publications

    Braun, Michael and Paul Damien (2016). “Scalable Rejection Sampling for Bayesian Hierarchical Models.” Marketing Science, 35(3):427–444. https://doi.org/10/b4bd .

    Braun, Michael, David A. Schweidel, and Eli M. Stein (2015). “Transaction Attributes and Customer Valuation.” Journal of Marketing Research, 52(6):848–864. https://doi.org/10/b4bb .

    Braun, Michael (2014). “trustOptim: An R Package for Trust Region Optimization with Sparse Hessians.” Journal of Statistical Software, 60(4):1–16. https://doi.org/10/b4bc

    Braun, Michael and Wendy W. Moe (2013). “Online Display Advertising: Modeling the Effects of Multiple Creatives and Individual Impression Histories.” Marketing Science, 32(5):753–767. https://doi.org/10/b4bf 

    Braun, Michael and David A. Schweidel (2011). “Modeling Customer Lifetimes with Multiple Causes of Churn.” Marketing Science, 30(5):881–902. https://doi.org/10/ddv975

    Michael Braun, Jeremy Rosenthal, and Kyle Therrian (2018). “Police Discretion and Racial Disparity in Organized Retail Theft Arrests: Evidence from Texas.” Journal of Empirical Legal Studies, 15(4). In press. https://ssrn.com/abstract=2959076.

    Michael Braun (2017). “sparseHessianFD: Estimating Sparse Hessian Matrices in R.” Journal of Statistical Software, 82(10):1–22. http://doi.org/10.18637/jss.v082.i10.