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SW14 - Keynote Speaker

The SW14 committee are very pleased to advise that Barry Nelson, from Northwestern University near Chicago, has kindly agreed to be keynote speaker for our Simulation Workshop on 1 – 2 April 2014.

Barry L. Nelson

Department of Industrial Engineering & Management Sciences

Abstract :

Why Good Simulations Go Bad

Simulation is a powerful tool to design, evaluate and improve the kinds of systems and processes that concern operations researchers and management scientists. Far from its early role as the brute force method of last resort, simulation now supports decision making both routine and critical. The software, and knowledge about how to use it, are widespread. But simulation frequently involves a large commitment of time, effort and money, and users often do not get everything they paid for; even worse, the results they do get may be seriously misleading. This talk describes common ways that good simulations go bad and how to avoid (or at least recognize) them. Lots of examples will be provided to support the technical points.

Short biography :

Barry L. Nelson is the Walter P. Murphy Professor and Chair of the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Sciences at Northwestern University. He received his B.A. in mathematics and computer science from DePauw University and his M.S. and Ph.D. in industrial engineering from Purdue University. Before coming to Northwestern in 1995 he was on the faculty at The Ohio State University.

Nelson’s research is on the design and analysis of computer simulation experiments on models of discrete-event, stochastic systems, with applications to manufacturing, services, finance and transportation.  He has published numerous papers and three books, including Discrete-Event System Simulation, 5th edition (2010), and Foundations and Methods of Stochastic Simulation: A First Course (2013). Nelson is a Fellow of INFORMS and IIE. In 2006 he received the Outstanding Simulation Publication Award from the INFORMS Simulation Society for his work on simulation optimization, and in 2007 and 2010 he was awarded the Best Paper-Operations Award from IIE Transactions. He has also received the Northwestern University Alumni Association Excellence in Teaching Award, and has twice been named McCormick Teacher of the Year in engineering at Northwestern.