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INFORMS: CARE positions disaster relief with promising discipline of humanitarian logistics
Date:7/21/2011

Operations research models developed by a team at the Georgia Institute of Technology helped CARE International pick three locations worldwide to supply relief quickly to victims of earthquakes, floods, and other natural disasters, according to a paper in a journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).

"Pre-Positioning of Emergency Items for CARE International" is by Serhan Duran, currently at the Middle East Technical University in Ankara Turkey, and by Marco A. Gutierrez and Pinar Keskinocak of the H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology. It appears in a special issue of the INFORMS journal Interfaces that is dedicated to the new, growing field of humanitarian logistics, which relies on industrial concepts like supply chain management to benefit the public sector.

The special issue is edited by Ozlem Ergun, Prof. Keskinocak, and Julie Swann, who are directors of the Georgia Tech Center for Health and Humanitarian Logistics.

A podcast interview with Professors Keskinocak and Swann is at http://www.scienceofbetter.org/podcast/swann.html and at www.scienceofbetter.org/podcast.

"The team's work not only gave us excellent recommendations regarding locations, inventory levels, and an expansion strategy for the network, but is also serving as the basis for funding proposals for the network," writes Rigoberto Giron, Associate Vice President, Strategic Initiatives and Supply Chain Management, CARE, in a post-script to the study. "By pre-positioning we expect to reduce response time from weeks to 48-72 hours, reduce procurement costs by buying in larger quantities, reduce freight costs by using transportation resources more efficiently and improve coordination with other responding organizations."

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Contact: Barry List
barry.list@informs.org
443-757-3560
Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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