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MIDAS COVID-19 Special Seminar Series: Siqian Shen – From Data to Actions, From Observations to Solutions — A Summary of Operations Research and Industrial Engineering Tools for Fighting COVID-19
April 30, 2020 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
Associate Professor, Department of Industrial & Operations Engineering, University of Michigan
From Data to Actions, From Observations to Solutions — A Summary of Operations Research and Industrial Engineering Tools for Fighting COVID-19
Operations Research and Industrial Engineering (OR & IE) approaches are widely used and play important roles in improving the design and operations of many standard corporate activities such as supply chain management, job/staff scheduling, vehicle routing, facility location, and resource allocation. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, policymakers, companies, community workers and individual households have been designing new systems and procedures to fight the virus. Many problems related to optimizing these systems and their operations can be tackled by extending the traditional OR & IE approaches with new objectives, constraints, and input data. The purpose of this talk is to summarize potential scenarios one may encounter during the prevention, disease control, intervention and recovery phases during COVID-19 outbreaks, and point out the OR & IE models that can be applied for solving the related problems. Using these techniques, policymakers can better prepare for rare but catastrophic events such as the COVID-19 pandemic, can better inform the public to perform “social distancing”, can better utilize resources and ensure medical supplies during the outbreak, and can improve the quality of life and work to mitigate economic losses.