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Obituary
James Carman

12 January 2005


James Carman (UC Berkeley photo)
James M. Carman, a professor emeritus of business administration at the Haas School of Business and a pioneer in economics and the marketing of health-care systems, died Dec. 9 at his home in Kensington. He was 73 and had been diagnosed with prostate cancer two years ago.

A native of Cincinnati, Carman served as a professor at the Haas School from 1962 to 1992. He also twice served as associate dean there and was acting dean in 1983. Carman was director of a new graduate program for four years after its establishment in 1991 that allowed students to simultaneously major in business administration and public health.

Carman’s research focused on services management and marketing, distribution channels and health-care-delivery systems, customer satisfaction and quality management, public policy and strategic alliances, and the transition difficulties facing central European economies.

He contributed to 25 books and authored Marketing: Principles and Methods in 1973. Carman also was the author or co-author of more than 60 articles in professional journals, writing about the Southern Pacific Railroad’s survival strategy in the early ’90s, reasons for the failure of behavior-modification campaigns (such as those encouraging seat-belt use), energy conservation, and adolescent drinking and driving. He also wrote about public regulation of marketing, diminishing returns for advertising, computers in banking and marketing, hospital-based health-care cooperatives, the design of consumer-research panels, and why retailers should focus their advertising on new arrivals to their communities.

Carman was awarded the Charles C. Slater Memorial Prize by the Journal of Macromarketing in 2002 for an article he co-authored about organizational transformations in economies in transition. (He had previously won the prize, in 1997, for an article he co-wrote about public regulation of marketing.) He received a Fulbright-Hays grant in 1983 and spent seven months doing comparative research about distribution systems in Norway. After that, he worked in the Department of Business Administration at the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, returning to Berkeley in fall 1984.

Carman earned a B.S. in chemical engineering at Purdue University in 1953, then served in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955. He earned his master’s in business administration at Indiana University in 1956, and his Ph.D. at the University of Michigan in 1963. At Michigan he studied marketing, statistics, management science, and economic theory. He was a teaching fellow and instructor at Ann Arbor from 1959 to 1962 before joining the Berkeley faculty.

Survivors include his wife, Carol, of Kensington; daughters, Barbara Peschiera of Portland, Ore., and Kathryn Fulton of Wheat Ridge, Colo.; son, Paul Carman of Richmond; and four grandchildren.

Funeral services were held in mid-December. Donations in his memory may be made to the Sutter Visiting Nurses Association and Hospice, 1900 Powell St., Suite 300, Emeryville, CA 94608, or the Berkeley Canterbury Foundation, 2334 Bancroft Way, Berkeley CA 94704.

— Kathleen Maclay