Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Exciting POMS Conference in DC with Great Talks and Social Events

The 30th Production and Operations Management (POMS) Conference has now come to an end. It was a wonderful experience with over 2,000 conferees converging on Washington DC for the conference.

It started with some drama, because of the weather on Thursday, May 2, with big storms and temps in the 90s in DC. This resulted in flight delays for some including one of my doctoral students, Deniz Besik, who had a 4 hour delay from Bradley Airport to Reagan National Airport. The next morning, we had the first of a series of papers to present, beginning in the 8AM session. She made it to her hotel past 1AM and managed to register and to show up on time - clearly a sign of grit and success.  Some of us had taken earlier flights so we were spared delays. Also, Deniz was selected for and took part in the POMS Doctoral Colloquium on Saturday. Special congratulations to her since on Thursday afternoon, she was recognized by the Isenberg School of Management with the 2019 Outstanding Doctoral Student Researcher Award - quite the accomplishment, since our school has 7 different departments. I am very proud of her and very happy for her. Below is a photo that was shared on Twitter of Deniz with the award and with PhD friends: Rodrigo Mercado, Pritha Dutta, and Destenie Nock. Both Pritha and Destenie are receiving their PhDs at UMass Amherst ceremonies later this week and are off to academic careers. I am sure that they will be amazing professors at Pace University in NYC and at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, respectively!

Our papers at POMS were presented in sessions on economics and operations management; healthcare, and humanitarian operations. The second and third presentations below were based on papers recently published in the journals Omega and the International Journal of Production Economics, respectively.

We have posted our presentations on the Supernetwork Center website.

The quality of the presentations in all sessions that I attended was excellent (generating many ideas and even possible new collaborations). It was a delight to see colleagues from Canada, Turkey, the UK, and across the US. Because of the location and also timing of the conference, it was a draw for many first timers and also quite a few INFORMS members, which was great. As a memento, we had photos taken of the speakers at the first session and then of even the audience as well as speakers of the third.
It is truly fabulous to see the interest in a spectrum of highly relevant topics for both research and practice!

In the below photo I am standing with Pritha Dutta, who is my 21st PhD student. She has done fundamental work on game theory and blood supply chains.
Socializing and networking are important components of any conference, as is reconnecting, and I love the serendipity of encountering colleagues and friends.
Plus, is is always thrilling to see the great Springer editors and, in this case, Matt Amboy, at the exhibits.

Of course, what would a conference in DC be without some exploring from Georgetown to the fabulous art museums. Luckily, Saturday's weather was ideal for walking.

It was a delight to see Renoirs, Van Goghs, and Monets, as well as the portraits of President Obama and Michelle Obama. I was captivated by the audience viewing the latter - so many women!
My tradition at almost any conference is to treat a group that includes Supernetwork Center Associates, some of whom were my former doctoral students at the Isenberg School of Management, and friends to a dinner. On Saturday evening we enjoyed a scrumptious dinner at La Tomate, in proximity to the Hilton, which was the conference hotel. The food was magnificent and the company event better! We had an area just for us, which was very cozy.
After desserts, we took a group photo.
It is so rewarding to see my former PhD students, now professors at wonderful universities and colleges, thriving both professionally and personally.

And on a very rainy Sunday, the conferees and guests convened for a lavish awards luncheon and service was very prompt - extraordinarily efficient, but, then again, it was a POMS conference.
A special thanks to the "other" Professor Nagurney, for not only being a co-author of our first paper presentation at POMS, but for also helping me with the luggage and logistics.
Congratulations to the organizers of the 30th POMS Conference on its success!