Logo: University of Southern California

Crain, David


Professor Crain

Contact information


Professor David Crain

Civil and Environmental Engineering

University of Southern California

3620 S. Vermont Avenue, KAP 210

Los Angeles, CA 90089-2531


Tel: (213) 740-0603 main office

Fax: (213) 744-1426

Email: crain@usc.edu































































Research Interests
  • Marketing
  • Physics
  • Material science engineering

Biographical Information

Ph.D. 1976 University of Southern California
M.S. 1971 University of Southern California
B.S. 1968 University of Southern California

David W. Crain has more than 25 years’ experience managing the marketing, strategy, and engineering functions in a corporate setting.  He was Director of Markets and Strategies for Fluor Corporation which, at $12 billion in revenues, is the largest engineering and construction firm in the world.  While at Fluor, Dr. Crain managed a staff of 6 MBA market researchers performing analysis of the engineering & construction industry: the marketplace, competitors, partners, merger-and-acquisition targets, and related economic, business and geo-political conditions.  He advised Fluor on strategy issues such as branding, mission/vision formulation, market research and segmentation, and geographical positioning and marketing strategies.

Prior to joining Fluor Daniel, Dr. Crain managed competitive analysis and strategic planning for Los Angeles-based Pacific Enterprises (now Sempra Energy), a $3 billion energy-services conglomerate.  There, he helped shape Pacific Enterprises' international diversification objectives, and established that organization's competitive-intelligence function.  Earlier he managed the engineering-design department for Pacific Enterprises' principal subsidiary, the Southern California Gas Company, progressing to manager of a staff of 60 professionals and an annual budget of $50 million. 

In earlier professional activities, Dr. Crain was with the United States Naval Research Center in San Diego where he was responsible for development of microelectronics for anti-submarine-warfare systems.  It was there, while working on undersea television exploration technology, he conceived and received the first patent on what became the “1st and Ten” concept introduced on ESPN football telecasts in 1998, now widely used in network sportscasting.

For more than 20 years, David Crain was a Lecturer and Adjunct Professor at Cal Poly Pomona and instructed graduate and undergraduate students in electronics and computer sciences.  In recent years at Pepperdine, USC, Cal State Fullerton and Claremont, he has taught business strategy analysis and formulation and market research to graduate level business students.  He is past President of the California Chapter of the Strategic Leadership Forum—an international organization dedicated to fostering the art and discipline of strategic planning in business—and he  co-founded a new organization, the Association for Strategic Planning, for which he served as its president (1999-03 and 2004-05).

David Crain presently consults to large corporations in marketing and business strategy.  He received his Ph.D. in Engineering from USC where his dissertation focused on semiconductor materials development for flash memory applications some 25 years before commercialization of the technology.  His interests are varied and include video technology and movie-making, collecting motion-picture soundtracks, fitness,    hiking, and golf.  He has two grown children and resides with his wife Sheila in Hacienda Heights.