About Me

Hi! I am an Assistant Professor at Columbia Business School in the Decision, Risk, and Operations division.

Previously, I was a postdoctoral associate at MIT. I received my PhD in Operations Research from Stanford University, where I was affiliated with the Operations Research group in MS&E and the Society and Algorithms Lab. Before coming to Stanford, I graduated from Pomona College with a degree in mathematics.

Research Interests

My research develops data science methods tailored to social systems, such as online marketplaces, education systems, social media, and digital health platforms. In particular, I focus on experimentation and recommendation systems.

My work combines interdisciplinary approaches from operations research, statistics, causal inference, and economics to develop practical solutions with theoretical guarantees. I inform my research with first hand experience working on these platforms.


  • Nov 2023: Plenary talk at MIT CODE on experimental design for public health interventions (see talk recording).
    • Parallel session presentations on “Recommendation Algorithms and User Strategization” (presented by coauthor Sarah Cen) and “Quantifying the Effect of Interference on Platform Decisions”.
  • Oct 2023: Received the INFORMS Dantzig Dissertation Award and the MSOM Service Management SIG Best Paper Award.
  • Oct 2023: Co-organizing a series of three INFORMS sessions on the Frontiers of Experimentation, with Hongseok Namkong.
  • July 2023: Made the move from Boston to New York!
  • July 2022: Featured on an episode of the MS&E Graduates podcast, where I discuss (among other things) my approach of blending engineering and stats with human behavior, Stanford’s entrepreneurial mindset, and advice for future students.


Email: hannah.li [at] columbia.edu