Companion of OR Guidelines

1) Introduction

The Companionship of Operational Research should be awarded for sustained support and encouragement for the development of operational research or for those in influential positions who are in broad sympathy with the subject area. Such contributions might be through public or private activities.

The President Elect's / Past President's Committee (PEC/PPC) takes responsibility for this award.

2) Selection/Eligibility

Companions are normally expected to fall within one of the following categories:

  1. Senior managers in the private sector or public sector (including government) who have a record of long term encouragement of OR within their own organisations. This category includes senior figures in consultancy firms with a strong OR component. A positive factor is evidence of personal involvement in The OR Society events.
  2. Senior non-OR academics who have a record of long-term encouragement for operational research within their own institutions. These should normally be at or near Vice-Chancellorial level.
  3. Eminent persons in related disciplines. (Statistics, economics, computing, systems are among those which are likely candidates.) A potential candidate might be expected already to have received some recognition as leader in his or her field.
  4. Noted public figures. This excludes active politicians. However ex-politicians (for example, those rehabilitated by lengthy service in the House of Lords) might be considered.
  5. Those who have given outstanding or otherwise inadequately recognised service to The OR Society. A positive factor is involvement in international OR societies. Ex-Presidents are normally excluded until after a further extended period of service to the society or the subject.
  6. Leaders of operational research societies in foreign countries.

Those who hold the society’s Silver/Beale Medal should not normally be considered for Companionship of Operational Research.

3) Entry

Nominations should be sent to [email protected] by 30th April.

4) Award

Council resolution 16 December 1997 determined that:

  • all future Companions shall receive a scroll;
  • all existing and future Companions shall receive an annual invitation to the Blackett Lecture and the dinner following;
  • existing Companions shall retain the right to free attendance at ORS conferences, but this right is not extended to future Companions; and
  • all existing and future Companions shall be offered the option of honorary membership for life under the terms of Article 7 (which does not confer voting rights).

5) Procedures

The whole process is the responsibility of the President Elect / Past President’s committee.

A call for nominations shall be published in the March issue of Inside OR.

The President Elect / Past President will make an announcement at the March / April meeting of General Council, asking for nominations (in the strictest confidence). PE/PPC may use this occasion as an opportunity to meet to discuss nominations and to seek proposers where not already suggested.

PE/PPC may request suggestions from appropriate quarters which might include the committees of Regional Societies and Special Interest Groups. The PEC/PPC will also itself generate the names of possible Companions. The entire above procedure should be on terms of strictest confidentiality. No-one (including possible Companions) outside the committee should be informed of what names were under consideration.

Suggested names should be accompanied by a brief supporting statement. The closing date for receipt of nominations shall be 30th April to allow the PEC/PPC to discuss them at Board/General Council/Committee meetings.

PE/PPC should remove any ineligible nominations and create a shortlist for the award, ensuring that all the necessary paperwork has been submitted. The shortlists should be emailed to Board members to ensure there are no unforeseen ‘issues’ with the candidates, and for comments which might help the committee prioritise the shortlist. Again, these comments must be given in the strictest confidence.

The committee shall convey its decision and supply a citation to the Research & Publications Coordinator no later than 10 October.

The Head of Professional Services shall then inform the candidate(s) of the outcome, asking if they are willing to accept the award, then arrange for the award to be announced in Inside OR and for the certificate(s) to be made. The presentation shall normally take place at the Blackett Lecture.

It is current practice that announcements relating to the Companionships shall be published on the society’s website as well as in Inside OR.