Brian Viard

Associate Professor of Strategy and Economics

PhD, University of Chicago

Areas of Expertise:

Competitive Strategy, E-Commerce Strategy, Environmental Economics, Internet Adoption, Managerial Economics, Pricing and Product Strategies in IT

Brian Viard moved to Beijing in 2007 to join the faculty of Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB). Prior to that, he was a professor at Stanford Graduate School of Business. Professor Viard’s research focuses on industrial organization economics, economics of strategy, and environmental economics. He has studied the pricing and product strategies of firms in information and technology industries, including the role of product upgrades and complementary goods. In the telecommunications industry, he has examined how entry into local telecommunications markets affects consumer welfare and how competition in cellular phone markets influences technology adoption and pricing. He has also studied whether switching costs make markets more or less competitive and the effectiveness of reward programs in creating switching costs.

Professor Viard’s recent work focuses on the determinants of Internet adoption, including provider competition and availability of content. He is also currently examining the economic effects of China’s efforts to reduce automobile pollution and the effect of air pollution on manufacturing productivity. Professor Viard teaches courses on competitive strategy, managerial economics, and information goods markets and is the recipient of CKGSB’s inaugural M.B.A. Best Teaching Award. He received his Ph.D. in Business Economics from the University of Chicago.

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  • Chinese MBA
  • English MBA
  • ME101 Managerial Economics, Module 1 2016: Syllabus
  • CPSG502 Competitive Strategy, Module 5 2012: Syllabus
  • MGT524 E-Commerce Strategy, Spring 2009: Syllabus
  • STRAMGT374 Strategy in Information Goods Markets, Spring 2007: Syllabus
  • STRAMGT630 Economics of Strategy and Organization (Ph.D. Class), Winter 2007: Syllabus
  • MGT525 Competitive Strategy, Fall 2005: Syllabus
  • Strategy 101 Presentation (advice to Yale SOM students on strategy concepts for consulting interviews), December 9, 2005.
  • Strategy 101 Presentation (advice to Stanford MBAs on strategy concepts for consulting interviews), January 9, 2004.

Teaching Cases

  1. “99Bill,” with Arar Han, CKGSB Case #2011-09-1-214-1e (A) and #2011-09-1-215-1e (B), 2011. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  2. “Baidu: Searching for Truth?” with Arthur Chengchun Qi, CKGSB Case #2010-09-1-177-2e (A), #2010-09-1-179-2e (B), and #2010-09-1-189-2e (C), 2010. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  3. “The Battle for China’s Carbonated Beverage Industry,” with Christopher Hildner, CKGSB Case #2012-02-1-232-2 (A) and #2012-02-1-233-2 (B), 2012. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  4. “Blizzard Feels the Heat in China: Choosing a Local Partner for World of Warcraft,” with Richard Bethune, CKGSB Case #2011-09-1-190-2e (A) and #2011-09-1-195-2e (B), 2011. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  5. “Gushan and the Biodiesel Market: Is the Engine Running out of Gas?” with Yunfei Feng, CKGSB Case #2010-09-1-173-1e (A) and #2010-09-1-174-1e (B), 2010.
  6. “Third-Party Payment Systems in China,” with Arar Han, CKGSB Case #2010-09-1-163-1e, 2010. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  7. “The Instant Messaging Battle: New Enemies and Widening Conflict,” CKGSB Case #2010-09-1-162-1e, 2010. Available through CKGSB Case Center.
  8. “Blizzard v. Managing Intellectual Property,” with Pamela Yatsko, Stanford GSB Cases #SM-154 (A) and (B), 2007. Available through Harvard Business School Publishing.
  9. “ezboard: Making Customers Pay,” with Pamela Yatsko, Stanford GSB Case #SM-142, 2005. Available through Harvard Business School Publishing.
  10. “The Long Battle for an Instant Messaging Standard,” with Steven Fan, Stanford GSB Case #SM-138, 2005. Available through Harvard Business School Publishing.
  11. “Netflix: Opening or Closing Credits in Online Movie Distribution?” with Jessica Phillips Patrick, Stanford GSB Case #SM-131, 2004. Available through Stanford GSB.
  12. “Tata Consultancy Services: Globalization of Software Services,” with Sanjeev Dheer and John Roberts, Stanford GSB case #S-SM-18, 1993. Available through Harvard Business School Publishing.
  13. “EDS Information Technology Outsourcing,” with Sanjeev Dheer and Garth Saloner, 1992. Reprinted in Strategic Management of Technology and Innovation, Robert A. Burgelman, Modesto A. Maidique and Steven C. Wheelwright, Irwin, 2nd edition, 1996.
Selected Publications
  1. Commute Costs and Labor Supply: Evidence from a Satellite Campus” (with Shihe Fu), Journal of Economic Geography, Vol. 19, No. 3, 723 – 752, May 2019.
  2. The Effect of Beijing’s Driving Restrictions on Pollution and Economic Activity” (lead author with Shihe Fu), Journal of Public Economics, Vol. 125, 98 – 115, May 2015.
    Online Appendix: Click here
  3. Bayesian Estimation of Nonlinear Equilibrium Models with Random Coefficients” (lead author with Anne Gron and Nicholas G. Polson), Applied Stochastic Models in Business and Industry, Vol. 31, No. 4, 435 – 456, July/August 2015.
  4. The Effect of Content on Global Internet Adoption and the Global ‘Digital Divide‘” (lead author with Nicholas Economides)Management Science, 61, No. 3, 665 – 687, March 2015.
    Online Appendix: Click here
  5. The Effect of Market Structure on Cellular Technology Adoption and Pricing” (with Katja Seim) American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, Vol. 3, No. 2, 221 – 251, May 2011.
  6. Quantifying the Benefits of Entry into Local Phone Service” (with Nicholas Economides and Katja Seim) The RAND Journal of Economics, Vol. 39, No. 3, 699 – 730, Autumn 2008.
  7. Do Frequency Reward Programs Create Switching Costs?” (with Wesley Hartmann) Quantitative Marketing and Economics, Vol. 6, No. 2, 109 – 137 (lead article), June 2008.
  8. Do Switching Costs Make Markets More or Less Competitive?: The Case of 800-Number Portability” The RAND Journal of Economics, Vol. 38, No. 1, 146 – 163, Spring 2007.
    Working paper version with theoretical model: click here (Stanford GSB working paper #1773R1).
  9. Information Goods Upgrades: Theory and Evidence” The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, Vol. 7, Issue 1 (Contributions), Article 3, 2007.
  10. Recent Advances in Structural Econometric Modeling: Dynamics, Product Positioning and Entry” (with Jean-Pierre Dube, K. Sudhir, Andrew Chiang, Greg Crawford, Michaela Draganska, Jeremy Fox, Wesley Hartmann, Gunter Hitsch, Miguel Villas-Boas, and Naufel Vilcassim) invited in Marketing Letters, Vol. 16, Issue 3 – 4, December 2005, 209 – 224.
  11. Pricing of Complements and Network Effects” (with Nicholas Economides) in Regulation and the Economic Performance of Communication and Information Networks, edited by Gary Madden, Edward Elgar, 2011.
Working Papers
  1. Air Quality and Manufacturing Firm Productivity: Nationwide Estimates for China” (with Shihe Fu and Peng Zhang), Dec 2019.
  2. Trans-Boundary Air Pollution Spillovers: Physical Transport and Economic Costs by Distance” (with Shihe Fu and Peng Zhang), July, 2020.
  3. Quantity-Based Price Discrimination using Frequency Reward Programs” (with Wesley R. Hartmann), update coming soon.
  4. Dynamics of the Subnational Regional Effect: The Role of Institutions and Institutional Access,” (with Haibing Shu), March 2020.