I am an Associate Professor and Clark Centennial Fellow in Business affiliated with McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin. My research interests are in studying market frictions (behavioral and informational)  in relation to topics like pricing and sales management. I received an MS in Applied Economics and a Ph.D. in Business Administration, both from the University of Minnesota at Twin Cities.

Select Research Papers

  1.  Raghunath Singh Rao, Julie Irwin and Zhuping Liu (2020). Flying with a Net, and Without: Preventative Devices and Self-Control. International Journal of Research in Marketing, Forthcoming
    • Using a novel model of self-control, we study the impact of policies aimed at encouraging the use of preventative devices.
  2. Richard Schaefer, Raghunath Singh Rao and Vijay Mahajan (2018). “Marketing Self-Improvement Programs for Self-Signaling Consumers. Marketing Science 37.6: 912-929
    • Modeling how consumers manage self-control perceptions, we derive equilibrium pricing policies for self-improvement programs.
    • Winner, Fordham Univ. dissertation proposal competition on Behavioral Pricing
  3. Jianqiang Zhang, Zhuping Liu and Raghunath Singh Rao (2018). “Flirting with the Enemy: Online Competitor Referral and Entry-Deterrence.Quantitative Marketing and Economics, 16.2: 209-249
    • We posit that the puzzling practice of “competitor referrals” can be rationalized by entry deterrence motives.
  4. William Hedgcock, Raghunath Singh Rao and Haipeng (Allan) Chen (2016). “Choosing to Choose: The Effects of Decoys and Prior Choice on Deferral.” Management Science, 62.10: 2952-2976 [Data and Programs]
    • Using a reference-dependent model, we make predictions on how consumers “choose not to choose” and test these using four studies.
  5. Raghunath Singh Rao and Richard Schaefer (2013). “Conspicuous Consumption and Dynamic Pricing.Marketing Science, 32.5: 786-804 [Web Appendix]
    • We examine firms’ pricing & product decisions modeling consumers’ status and quality considerations.
  6. Sunil Kishore, Raghunath Singh Rao, Om Narasimhan and George John (2013). “Bonuses versus Commissions: A Field Study.” Journal of Marketing Research 50.3: 317-333. [Web Appendix]
    • We study the differential effects of bonuses vs. commissions in a large field experiment conducted at a pharma firm.
    • Winner, 2014 American Marketing Association’s (AMA) Sales SIG Excellence in Research Award for Best Paper on Sales Management
  7.  Kim Jungkeun, Raghunath Singh Rao, Kyeongheui Kim, and Akshay R. Rao (2011). “More or Less: A Model and Empirical Evidence on Preferences for Under and Over-payment in Trade-in TransactionsJournal of Marketing Research 48.1: 157-171. [Web Appendix ]
    • We ask whether economically irrelevant differences in the structure of trade-in transactions will yield meaningful differences in preferences.
  8.  Saini, Ritesh, Raghunath Singh Rao, and Ashwani Monga (2010). “Is That Deal Worth My Time? The Interactive Effect of Relative and Referent Thinking on Willingness to Seek a Bargain.” Journal of Marketing 74.1: 34-48. [Web Appendix]
    • Our model jointly incorporates relative and referent thinking effects yielding novel predictions that are tested in lab studies.
  9.  Rao, Raghunath Singh, Om Narasimhan, and George John (2009). “Understanding the Role of Trade-Ins in Durable Goods Markets: Theory and Evidence.Marketing Science 28.5: 950-967.
    • We build a model of trade-ins in durable goods markets with ‘lemons problem’ and test its predictions in US auto market.
  10.  Rao, Raghunath Singh, Rajesh K. Chandy, and Jaideep C. Prabhu (2008). “The Fruits of Legitimacy: Why Some New Ventures Gain More from Innovation than Others.” Journal of Marketing 72.4: 58-75.
    • We examine drivers of returns to product introductions by new ventures using stock market gains in the US biotech industry.
    • Winner, 2018 AMA Entrepreneurial Marketing SIG Gerald E. Hills Best Paper Award

I can be reached at raghunath dot rao at mccombs dot utexas dot edu.