Carnegie Mellon University

Our History and Impact

Throughout our history, the Tepper School’s aim has never been to keep pace with business practice. Rather, we stay ahead of the marketplace via cutting-edge knowledge discovery and a rigorous approach to leadership and analytics.


When our business school first appeared on the management education scene in 1949, the way the game was played changed in an instant. Management science was an academic upstart, and it did not play by the rules.

Bigger schools touted conventional wisdom about how problems were meant to be solved. Back then, the case study method was thought to be “the way.”

But, we didn’t listen.

Esteemed institutions pushed forth their orthodoxy, but were startled when challengers like Simon, Modigliani, Miller, Cooper and other pioneers defied academic tradition, more excited by novel ways of thinking rather than the prominence of other schools’ ivory towers.

So, we kept moving.

And, as the history books now recount, we did, indeed, find the better way: a problem-solving path called management science that had not existed, and one that was a defining direction for management education and industry.

How is it that a business school so small has made an impact so big?

  • A roster of nine Nobel laureates, a legacy which outpaces nearly all our peers.
  • Rankings that have been on the rise for several years and have broken the Top 10.
  • A global renown for analytics and big data, an arena whose time has come and arrived on our doorstep.
  • And, one of the nation's most innovative, creative business school entrepreneurship centers, whose present-day contributions exceed 200 new companies and 9,000 jobs.

Amid the velocity of results, our vision remains linked to Carnegie Mellon University, the academic conservatory where the hard sciences work alongside the creative arts to produce a workmanship admired (and often replicated) by global peers, lawmakers, researchers and corporate leaders. 

Today, we are recognized as among the world’s most innovative business schools, with a particular focus on research and teaching in the areas of organizational behavior, finance, entrepreneurship, economics, marketing, operations management and operations research.

Management Science

How do you solve a problem that has no precedent?

The Tepper School consistently stands out for its role in introducing a new model that changed how the market approached business problems: Management science, also recognized as decision-making powered by analytics, was the first approach to integrate scientific methods into complex problem-solving. Today, some form of Carnegie Mellon's original academic model is taught at every leading business school.

We respect case studies. They're great tools for looking in the rearview mirror. But, to forecast, predict and model the answers to problems that lie in front of you, a mastery of analytics is necessary. Our approach brings together Carnegie Mellon's strengths in business management, computer modeling, organizational behavior and economic theory.

Our students and graduates never make the mistake of pigeonholing "quant" into the stereotype of numbers crunching. They understand it's the unsung hero of complex decision-making, which is why their career advantage is a powerful combination of leadership and analytics. Our program prepares you to strategically make a business case that is supported with impressive insight, data and management expertise.

The analytical toolkit for management science begins with the tools for economic understanding, optimization, and predictive and prescriptive modeling, as well as for responding to uncertain, complex business issues. These fundamental techniques provide the ability to assess and to apply a variety of models to any business problem you will confront.

Our alumni consistently share success stories that highlight the career advantage they have gained by being among the leading performers who demonstrate analytical and leadership abilities beyond the business school norm.