The Doctoral Award

The award, for the 'Most Distinguished Body of Research leading to the Award of a Doctorate in the field of OR', is an annual award, with the award being made at The OR Society’s Blackett Lecture in November.

The qualifying period is the calendar year in which the PhD or DPhil is defended or approved. For the full timetable, see the Guidelines tab. The thesis being submitted for consideration must have been examined at a UK University within the relevant time period.

With a prize fund of up to £2500 plus conference places available for the winner and runners-up, this represents an exciting development for PhD students. Initial nominations are normally from the external examiner who has identified the body of research as of exceptional quality.

The winner of the award wins a cash prize of £1500. Up to two runners-up each receive £500. The winner has their name engraved on the George Paterson shield as a permanent record of their achievement. The successful candidates are expected to present their work at the annual conference of The OR Society. A significant contribution towards to cost of the conference is available to all prize winners.

The deadline for receipt of submissions has been extended to 31 July for 2023 only.

All submissions should be to Carol McLaughlin, The OR Society Research and Publications Officer [email protected].

The winner and runners-up for this award are announced at the Blackett Lecture.

The George Patterson Memorial Shield of The OR Society

The George Paterson Memorial Shield

2022 Doctoral Award Winner

Dr Glory Alozie – University of Strathclyde

The Distance-Based Critical Node Detection Problem: Models and Algorithms

Glory Alozie’s thesis studies models and algorithms for the distance-based critical node detection problem in a network. This problem assesses the vulnerability of the network to the failure of nodes, which causes reduced connectivity of the network. Applications are widespread: these include telecommunication networks, networks supplying water, gas and electricity, and networks providing supplies in humanitarian logistics and military settings.

The thesis describes the development of new mixed integer programming (MIP) formulations that are computationally more effective than previously proposed formulations. Additionally, a heuristic is proposed for large networks. The heuristic combines ideas from evolutionary algorithms with neighbourhood search to generate near-optimal solutions. Extensive computational testing has been performed using a combination of publicly available benchmark datasets and randomly generated datasets based on some real-world instances. Computational results show the benefit of using the new MIP formulation over the previous formulations. Also, the heuristic is shown to generate optimal or near-optimal solutions for most instances.

The external examiner commented about "fine doctoral work" and stated that "there is strong interest in the findings for both theoreticians and practitioners". The co-supervisors wrote: "the best dissertation we have seen over many years of our careers". Glory Alozie is currently collaborating with the Air Force Research Laboratory in the US who are interested in applying the results of her research.

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Dr Glory Alozie – University of Strathclyde

Our 2022 Runners-up

Dr Edin Husic (London School Of Economics and Political Sciences)

Thesis Title: Nash welfare, valuated matroids, and gross substitutes


Dr Edwin Reynolds (Lancaster University)

Thesis Title: Modelling, solution and evaluation techniques for train timetable rescheduling via optimisation

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Left to right: Dr Edin Husic, Dr Edwin Reynolds

Previous Awards

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