New book by Jones School’s Dholakia is guide on how to price effectively

Pricing decisions are among the most important and impactful business decisions that a manager can make. A new book by Utpal Dholakia, a pricing strategy expert at Rice’s Jones Graduate School of Business, introduces the value pricing framework, a structured, versatile and comprehensive method for making good pricing decisions and executing and evaluating them.

“How to Price Effectively: A Guide for Managers and Entrepreneurs” is now available for free as a PDF version on his website, The Kindle version and the paperback versions are available for purchase on Amazon. The 301-page book’s framework weaves together the latest thinking from academic research journals, proven best practices from the leading pricing experts and ideas from other fields such as medical decision-making, consumer behavior and organizational psychology.

“Over the years, my students, clients and others have asked me to recommend pricing books on many occasions,” wrote Dholakia, a professor of management and the George R. Brown Professor of Marketing, in the book’s first chapter. “There are dozens of pricing books out there, and many of them are excellent and are referenced in this book. However, despite much searching, I could not find a single book that covered every component of the value pricing framework in a structured way. I decided to write this book as a practical guide that includes all relevant information needed to think about pricing issues and make effective pricing decisions.”

The book, which Dholakia began writing late last year, also introduces a set of useful and straightforward tools to implement the value pricing framework and studies many examples and company case studies that illustrate its nuances.

“Whether you are a manager of marketing, sales, operations, accounting or strategy functions, a consultant or an entrepreneur, if you play a role in your company’s or your client’s pricing activities, you will find the material covered in this book to be useful,” Dholakia wrote. “When you have finished reading it, I hope the building blocks of the value pricing framework and the philosophy behind it will be part of your everyday vocabulary and mindset. Each time you encounter an opportunity to evaluate, change or realize your company’s prices, you should be able to rely on this framework to make good pricing decisions.”

A faculty member at Rice since 2001, Dholakia teaches marketing and pricing strategies to MBA students and conducts research on consumer behavior and welfare, digital marketing and marketing strategy issues. He will use the book in his pricing classes this fall.

About Jeff Falk

Jeff Falk is associate director of national media relations in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs.