John D Lamb

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Research interests

My research interests are in Operational Research or Management Science. I am a member of the Operational Research Society. I make models of some aspect of the world we live in. Typically these are models of processes and problems of Operations Management such as logistics, scheduling, layout and queueing. My interests include conceptual models, computer models and applications.

My interests in conceptual modelling include the development of algorithms and heuristics for combinatorial or stochastic optimisation problems. Here, we wish to show that the techniques are reasonably efficient and ideally have some guarantee of local or global convergence. Specific interests include the design of statistical experiments for simulation models, the design and analysis of stochastic optimisation algorithms, and the design and analyis of heuristics and linear programmes for combinatorial optimisation problems for layout and location.

In computer modelling I am interested in the use of object-oriented and generic programming techniques to implement algorithms and heuristics efficiently. In particular, I’m interested in using C++ and Java to test the practical effectiveness of various optimisation techniques.

I am also interested in the practical application of Management Science to specific real problems. These are typically problems in operations management, but can arise in areas as diverse as physics and healthcare. In these the system being modelled is often more complex than can be handled by a general mathematical model or computer language. Validating the model may be at least as important as checking for internal consistency. Typically, we might construct a model using spreadsheets or discrete-event simulation or linear programming packages. We often validate these using applied statistics, typically with a statistical package.

If you are interested in collaborative research, PhD study, or just want to find out about modelling some problem, feel free to contact me.