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OR59 - Panel Session: OR Learning & Development

Wednesday 13 September 2017

This year at OR59 we are once again, very pleased to be hosting a Panel session on OR Learning and Development which has kindly been organised by Gilberto Montibeller from Loughborough University.

This panel will discuss the challenges and recent advances linked with OR learning.We will cover several key topics that should be of interest to practitioners and academics, from innovative ways of teaching OR and advanced analytics programmes to recent demands in the OR job market and OR capability building for industry and government.

Plenary Chair

Prof. Valerie Belton, University of Strathclyde

Valerie Belton gained degrees in mathematics and operational research (OR) from Durham and Lancaster Universities respectively. She then took up a post with the Civil Aviation Authority, before completing a Doctorate at Cambridge. Prior to joining Strathclyde in 1988 she held a lectureship in the OR Department at the University of Kent.

Val's principal focus of research interest is Multicriteria Decision Analysis (MCDA). This research, which has focused on the theoretically and practically well founded use of MCDA methodologies, has been primarily practice-led. Integration, across MCDA methods and of MCDA with other management science methods and methodologies, is an important theme and underpins her book Multicriteria Decision Analysis: an Integrated Approach (2002), co-authored with Theo Stewart.

Val has been very active in the national and international OR communities throughout her career. In 1980 she was the first woman to be elected to the Council of the UK OR Society and since then has served in many roles, including President of EURO (The European Federation of OR Societies) from 2009-10, President of the UK OR Society (2004-2006) and President of the International Society for MCDM from 2000- 2004.

Panel Members

Prof. Gilberto Montibeller, Loughborough University

Gilberto Montibeller is a Full Professor of Management Science at Loughborough University, and a member of its Management Science and Operations Group, one of the leading teams worldwide focused on Behavioural Operations Research. He has been on the faculties of the London School of Economics (LSE, UK), Kingston Business School (UK), and the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC, Brazil) before joining Loughborough University in 2015. Gilberto was awarded a BSc (Hons) in Electrical Engineering from UFSC and worked as a junior executive at British American Tobacco Brazil, before deciding for an academic career.  He then received an MSc in Engineering Economic Analysis (UFSC) and a DSc in Engineering Economic Analysis (UFSC/University of Strathclyde, UK), continuing his studies as a Pos-Doctoral Fellow in Management Science at the University of Strathclyde.

He is an expert on strategic decision and risk analysis.  As a decision scientist, Prof Montibeller has more than twenty years of experience in conducting decision analytic projects for private and public organisations, in Continental Europe, Britain, and South America. Client organisations include Defra, UK National Audit Office, World Health Organisation (WHO), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Babcock International, Itaipu Binational (Brazil and Paraguay), and the Brazilian Centre for SMEs (SEBRAE), among others. Two of his main areas of applications are resource allocation against emerging threats, particularly health and terrorist ones, and multi-criteria health prioritisations. Prof Montibeller has extensive experience with management education and training. He has been a regular speaker at LSE Enterprise executive education courses, and taught successful courses at the LSE Executive Summer School. He has led in-company training for a large number of organisations such as Alcoa Inc., Japan Tobacco Int., CMS Cameron McKenna, and Surrey County Council. He has also taught in MBA programmes, both at Warwick Business School and Kingston Business School.

Mr David Collier, Consultant / LSE, White Ox

David Collier is a management consultant with over 35 years’ experience in three key aspects of decision making: structured methods; human factors/human error; and stakeholder involvement and communication.

He specialises in projects where local partnerships are being established or where the aim is to involve stakeholders in governance structures or decision making, including allocation of resources and siting studies. David has an international reputation as an independent peer reviewer on high-profile projects in the defence, energy and health sectors.


Prof. Alberto Franco,  Loughborough University

Alberto Franco started his career as an engineering consultant in the area of soil mechanics. In 1988 he started a gradual move into academia, first lecturing in mathematics and subsequently in management science and operations management. Alberto moved to the UK in 1996 to study Operational Research (OR), and gained MSc and PhD degrees from Lancaster University and the London School of Economics (LSE), respectively. Since then he has held various positions at, among  others, LSE, Strathclyde, Warwick, IE (Madrid), and Radboud (Netherlands).

Alberto joined Loughborough University in June 2013 as Professor of Management Sciences and Head of the Management Science and Operations Group. He is now Associate Dean (Teaching) of the School of Business and Economics. Alberto is also a Professor at the Escuela de Postgrado of the Universidad del Pacifico (Peru).

As an operational researcher, Alberto has extensive consulting experience in heath, transport, construction, government and defence, where he has led projects to support strategic management, value-focused thinking, risk analysis, and resource allocation. Organisations he has worked with include: Whitbread, Bombardier, Network Rail, Ministry of Defence, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and the World Health Organisation.

Alberto’s research interests lie in making the practice of OR more ‘visible’, with a view to discovering novel ways to improve OR practice and education. His ongoing research focuses on examining how behaviour affects, or is affected by, the use of OR-supported processes within teams. His research work has received many accolades, including the School of Business and Economics’ 2017 Dean’s Award for Best Researcher of Year, and the 2017 Loughborough University Enterprise Award for Impact from Research.

Dr Valentina Ferretti,  London School of Economics

Dr Valentina Ferretti is a Fellow in Decision Science in the Department of Management of the London School of Economics and Political Science. She holds a PhD in Decision Analysis (2011, Technical University of Turin, Italy) and her areas of expertise focus on two main themes. The first one is Decision Analytics and, in particular, the modelling of judgments that can be used in public policy making and management contexts. The second one is environmental impact assessment of projects, policies and programmes, paying particular attention to their spatial dimension. From the synergic blend of these two areas, her research interests focus on exploring behavioural issues in spatial decision-making processes and on developing judgement-based analytics for supporting innovative policy design.

Dr Ferretti research experience in decision analysis, risk analysis and territorial management led her to a strong track record of international publications in interdisciplinary journals such as the European Journal of Operational Research, Transportation Research Part D,Decision Support Systems, Land Use Policy, Ecological Indicators, Journal of Multicriteria Decision Analysis, among others. One of her papers, concerning the integration of Decision Analysis and Spatial Analysis for locational decisions, was awarded the Wiley Practice Prize by the International Society on Multi-Criteria Decision Making in 2011. Her Ph.D. thesis received the Giorgio Leonardi best Ph.D. thesis award in 2012 within the XXXIII Annual Scientific Conference of the Italian Association on Regional Sciences and one of her most recent projects was awarded the runner up position in the INFORMS 2016 Decision Analysis Practice Award.

Dr Ferretti holds research visiting positions at the London School of Economics (UK), at the University of Pittsburgh (USA), at the University of Southern California (USA), at the CNRS LAMSADE Laboratory in Paris (France), at Ecole Centrale (Paris, France), at the Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation - ITC, University of Twente, Enschede (The Netherlands), at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences of Madrid (ICMAT, Spain), at the System Analysis Laboratory at Aalto University in Helsinki (Finland) and at the University of Adger (Grimstad, Norway).