(May 23, 2017) Ph.D. candidates Fangzhou Sun and Joseph (Joey) Cochran won the first place award in the 2017 Student Case Competition in Logistics and Supply Chain from the Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE). Both Fangzhou and Joey are advised by Dr. Subhash C. Sarin, Paul T. Norton Endowed Professor in ISE. The competition was open to students worldwide, and the submitted entries were judged by experts in IISE. Fangzhou and Joey's paper, “An iterative two-stage approach for a location-inventory-routing problem,” was selected as the first place winner at the graduate level.
The paper is briefly summarized as follows:
The assigned case study pertained to a company introducing a new product in a market. Having already completed a market analysis, the company needs to determine a supply network and distribution plan. We proposed a two-stage approach to minimize the weekly total logistics cost incurred for operating production facilities and stores, holding inventory in stores, and shipping products from production facilities to stores and from stores to districts. An intent scale translation technique, which converts intentions into purchase probabilities, was used to predict demand that was revised by taking into consideration spatial interactions of different districts. Tight mathematical programming formulations as well as decomposition techniques were used to accelerate solution approach. Also, several useful managerial insights were generated.