Remembering Xavier Drèze
We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of our colleague and friend Xavier Drèze. Known to many simply as “X” or “Dr. X”, Xavier joined the UCLA marketing faculty in 2009 and was recently promoted to Full Professor. He not only was a star contributor to research and teaching in marketing, he also co-chaired UCLA’s center for research in the management of enterprise in media, entertainment and sports. A PhD graduate from The University of Chicago, he previously taught at Wharton, INSEAD, USC, UCLA and Louvain.
As a marketing scholar, Xavier Drèze had a rare combination of talents and interests, one of the few who actively contributes to the literatures in consumer behavior and marketing science. In nearly forty publications he addressed fundamental yet practical questions. Topics that he covered (and this is not an exhaustive list) include store pricing and shelf-space management with Steve Hoch, Mary Purk, Patricia Nisol, Naufel Vilcassim, Gilles Laurent and Marc Vanhuele, internet and email marketing with Fred Zufryden, Francois Hussherr, Michael Kamins, Andre Bonfrer and Valerie Folks, channel strategy with David Bell, movies with Andrew Ainslie and Fred Zufryden, branding with Sanjay Sood, and loyalty reward programs with Joe Nunes. In recent years, he started a new line of research with Joe Nunes and Young Hee Han in luxury marketing that was intellectually challenging, and -one of the topics Xavier loved most – counterintuitive to academics but perfectly sensible to practitioners. He had also just prepared for submission an article on comics… written as a comic, with Eric Yorkston. He reminded us that real marketing problems are well worthy of serious academic inquiry, and that theoretically and empirically sound solutions can be workable in practice. He also worked with an amazingly diverse set of scholars, at every level, from PhD students to luminaries in the field.
As a teacher and a colleague, Xavier was a real team player. He volunteered to teach courses that the group needed the most, and even while fighting his illness he was always generous with his advice on research to colleagues and graduate students alike. His substantial personal talents also showed in his spare time, as he was a passionate reader of science fiction, art, watch and pen collector, pool and ping pong player, sailor, diver, car racer, magician and bridge player. In everything that Xavier did in his life, he uncompromisingly pushed to master it.
We miss you terribly, X.
The UCLA Marketing Faculty and Emeriti
Aimee Drolet Rossi
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