LU News Archive

facebook twitter Linkedin Email

Profs Kenyon and Sen close knowledge gaps with new book

The two-year journey of Lamar University professors George Kenyon and Kabir C. (KC) Sen recently culminated in a new work designed to fill a significant gap in business knowledge.

Their new book, The Perception of Quality: Mapping Product and Service Quality to Consumer Perceptions was published by Springer-Verlag, Ltd. of London in December 2014 and is available as an eBook, as individual chapters, or in hardback.

George Kenyon“The book is a monogram hitting the gaps in the quality literature from W. Edwards Deming to current day,” said George Kenyon, associate professor of operations and supply chain management and William and Katherine Fouts Faculty Scholar in Business.

“Most of the available literature talks about the technical side of managing quality,” Kenyon said. “Relatively little has been written about the linkage between customer perceptions and the dimensions that we use to measure quality. This book attempts to bridge that gap by examining the concept of quality from a new point of view.”

The book provides an invaluable resource for managers, designers, manufacturers, professional practitioners and academics interested in quality management, Kenyon said. It also offers a useful supplementary text for marketing and quality management courses.

 “The book offers readers an improved understanding of how and why the design process must consider how the consumer will perceive a product or service,” said co-author K.C. Sen, who chairs the Department of Management and Marketing. Generous illustrations and case examples help the reader understand the concepts presented.

The genesis of the book was an article by Kenyon and Sen based on a survey conducted with students during a course in which they measured importance that consumers attribute to the various quality dimensions along the credence, search and experience properties of perception. An editor at Springer came across the article in “a European journal and it amazed me when he called and said he wanted someone to explore the niche and write a book on the subject,” Kenyon said.

Writing the book has created opportunities to team with other faculty such as Paul Latiolais in entrepreneurship, Kenyon said.  “It is a good jumping off point into other business disciplines,” he said.

Their partnership as co-authors gave the book a “marketing, business decision, engineering, and product design perspective,” Kenyon said. “In it we explore key areas when it comes to what the customer can see: the organization or the brand; the processes seen indirectly as in how well things are made; the logistics, like the supply chain when things are delivered to them; and, of course when they use the products or consume the services.”

KC Sen“Our goal is to get people who are thinking about quality, managing quality, and trying to make quality changes to think along those lines as they make decisions,” Kenyon said.

Kenyon, who holds a Ph.D. in business administration from Texas Tech University, and has taught at Lamar University since 2003.  He has also held academic positions at the University of Houston and Texas Tech, as well as served in industry at Hewlett Packard, Aspen Technology, Boeing, Dee Howard, Rockwell International, and Texas Instruments.

A prolific researcher and author of technical articles and papers, Sen holds a Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis and is chair of the management and marketing department. He has been on faculty in the College of Business since 1992.

For more information about business programs at Lamar University, visit business.lamar.edu.

Kenyon, G.N., Sen, K.C. (2014). London, UK: Springer-Verlag, Ltd., ISBN 978-1- 4471-6626-9. http://www.springer.com/engineering/mechanical+engineering /book/978-1-4471-6626-9.