Quantitative Pricing and Revenue Optimization

This is a hybrid teaching unit, it will partially be held online, partially in class.

Pricing and revenue optimization, also called revenue management, is a quantitative approach to setting and updating pricing and product availability decisions in a consistent and effective fashion. This approach has proven particularly successful in the airline industry, where fares and ticket offerings dynamically change as a function of the number of free seats, forecast of future demand and specific request characteristics.
Fostered by the development of online business and big data technologies, the adoption of revenue management has not only changed the airline sector but disruptively transformed the transportation, hospitality and advertising industries. In fact, revenue management is becoming increasingly important in a broad range of sectors including finance, retail and manufacturing.

Through a mix of lectures, case studies and guest speakers, we thoroughly discuss tactical decisions related to pricing and capacity allocation faced by companies that have some power to divide their customers into segments and to charge different prices to each segment. We first introduce the basics on pricing with and without a capacity (also called supply) constraint, then discuss price differentiation aspects and look at revenue optimization problems including customer segmentation. From these single resource problems, we move to the network case, in which multiple resources are used to provide a service. We also address overbooking aspects for dealing with no-shows and cancellations, and discuss markdown management for clearance of the inventory.

We typically use (relatively simple) quantitative models to address the revenue optimization problems under study. We therefore assume that the students have some basic knowledge of mathematical modeling and optimization including how to mathematically describe an optimization problem, how to implement it in a spreadsheet, how to get a solution, and how to interpret it.

The organizer of this teaching unit and its evaluation is the Faculty of Economics and Social Sciences of the University of Fribourg. Note that the registration procedure and deadlines are different from the JMCS.


Code 53038
Type Course
Site Fribourg
Track(s) T5 – Information Systems and Decision Support
Semester A2020


Learning Outcomes

The students gain a good understanding of the main issues and opportunities in pricing and revenue optimization, and learn to identify and exploit these opportunities in different business contexts.

Lecturer(s) Reinhard Bürgy
Language english
Course Page

The course page can be found at https://www3.unifr.ch/timetable/de/vorlesungsbeschreibung.html?show=93101.

Schedules and Rooms

Period Weekly
Schedule Tuesday, 13:15 - 16:00
Location UniFR, PER21 / online
Room D130

Additional information


First Lecture
The first lecture will take place on Tuesday, 15.09.2020.