Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Who is using OR methods and How

You often hear people in the OR field say that operations research is very broad, it can be applied to everything and every industry. However, keep in mind that it is often only in big corporations and organizations that one would expect to see OR specialists/analysts/consultants/etc.

So what fields/industries/corporations/companies/organizations/institutions do you know of that observe and practice OR?

To name a few...
  • Healthcare: in Vancouver, BC, we have the Fraser Health Authority and the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority; in Victoria, BC, there is the Vancouver Island Health Authority. They use OR to aid decision making in personnel scheduling, facility planning, resource management in general, and process design
  • Manufacturing: auto, aviation...
  • IT
  • Telecommunications
  • Agriculture
  • Finance: OR used for forecasting, portfolio management, personal consumption management
  • Service & Retail: restaurants, franchise, retail stores, etc. use OR for pricing, inventory management, process design
  • Military: of course this is the birthplace of OR
  • Mining
  • Shipping & Transportation
  • Waste Management: routing systems
What else can you think of? How do you use OR?

1 comment:

Calvin said...

The list you gave is something very good to know about. Any thought on what other fields are not using OR but could benefit from using it? What fields (particularly small and medium organizations in those fields) could benefit from being able to solve discrete optimization problems that are relevant to their operations?