Faculty Scholars

Faculty Scholar Kevin Taaffe, Ph.D., CPE at Clemson University, Clemson South Carolina

Kevin Taaffe, Ph.D.

Department Chair and Harriet and Jerry Dempsey Professor of Industrial Engineering
College of Engineering Computing and Applied Sciences

Contact: 864-656-0291 or taaffe@clemson.edu

Who is Dr. Taaffe?

Dr. Kevin M. Taaffe is the Harriet and Jerry Dempsey Professor and Department Chair in Industrial Engineering at Clemson University. After receiving B.S. and M.S. degrees in Industrial Engineering from the University of Illinois, Dr. Taaffe worked in the transportation logistics industry with American Airlines and Sabre for eight years, before returning to academia to obtain his Ph.D. from the University of Florida. Dr. Taaffe’s research interests include the application of simulation and optimization in healthcare, production, and transportation logistics. Dr. Taaffe focuses on healthcare logistics problems that range from patient flow to scheduling to clinical space capacity management. He works with clinicians, administrators, managers, and support staff to identify and solve problems related to the patient and staff experience within emergency medicine, surgical services, and sterile processing.

For more information, see his Department Profile.

How Dr. Taaffe’s research is transforming health care

Dr. Taaffe’s healthcare research involves improving patient flow, as well as communication and coordination of staff tasks, during surgical visits or emergency department visits to the hospital. The operating room, its upstream (pre-operative) and downstream (post-operative) processes, and sterile processing functions must be correctly planned and staffed for patient care to be delivered consistently and with high quality. Similarly, emergency department resources are tasked with meeting the emerging needs of patients, for which they do not fully understand until the patients arrive. The planning of resource use and informed decision making is critical to improving the time spent in the ED. One common theme to his healthcare research is the introduction and use of mathematical programming and computer simulation to support staff decision making, shift staffing, or patient assignment and scheduling. Dr. Taaffe has been supported by NSF, NIH/AHRQ, and most major hospitals across the state of South Carolina.

Health Research Expertise Keywords

Operations, Patient Flow, Scheduling, Simulation, Optimization, Lean, Process Flow, Operations Research