Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Very Excited About My Upcoming Speaking Engagements

The new academic year is off to a great start. It is the third week of the new academic year at UMass Amherst and I have been pleasantly surprised at how much I am enjoying teaching remotely.  I think that the engagement with students, with the right technology, enthusiasm, and energy, is making for a very rewarding educational experience. 

The beginning of the academic year also tends to be the time for the start of different speaker series and  a renewed conference season (post the summer). Such events are all now taking place remotely. The time to prepare a good talk has perhaps grown since the delivery is very often through Zoom, and one has to be cognizant of that.

In less than a month, I will be giving three invited presentations, each on a different theme/topic.

In late September, I'll have two presentations. The first presentation is an invited one for the INFORMS Chicago Analytics Conference,  and my talk will take place on September 25. This conference is being organized by the INFORMS Chicago Chapter and the INFORMS Analytics Society. The title of this presentation is, "Novel Supply Chain Network Models Inspired by the Covid-19 Pandemic: From Optimization to Game Theory."

I very much like the theme of this conference, which is Analytics to the Rescue! Joining me as invited speakers are fabulous colleagues of mine in the profession. I 'm sure that the Q&A will be stimulating and enlightening after my talk and the discussions wonderful, although virtual, throughout this conference.

The following Monday, on September 28, 2020, I will be speaking on, "Optimization of Food Supply Chain Networks: Why Quality, Trade Instruments, and Labor All Matter."  The venue for this presentation is something extra special - it is the Amazon Consumer Science Summit! I am one of six invited speakers and am truly honored to be presenting at this summit, which takes place September 28-October 1, 2020. My host is Dr. Mauricio G.C. Resende. I had been invited to speak at the Amazon Research Scientist Summit in August 2018, but with the wildfires in the area at that time and the bad smoke conditions, I sent my presentation in lieu of travel.

My presentation at the Amazon Summit will be panoramic in scope and will include some very recent research, inspired by the pandemic, on food supply chains and disruptions, as well as research done with my former PhD student, now Dr. Deniz Besik, who is in her first year as an Assistant Professor at the University of Richmond.  We wrote 6 papers together (thus far), some with other co-authors, including Professors June Dong, Dong Li, and Ladimer S. Nagurney. All six of the papers have been published. Deniz's successful PhD defense took place on March 6, 2020, only a few days before WHO declared the Covid-19 pandemic.  The research that we did on tariffs, quotas, and tariff-rate quotas is very relevant in the pandemic. 

And, on October 7, 2020, I will be speaking on "Game Theory Network Models for Disaster Relief," at the USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society." Information on that presentation is available on this website. We have continued our research on game theory in the pandemic and I now have a PhD student, Mojtaba Salarpour, focusing on this topic. His most recent published paper is, "A Stochastic Disaster Relief Game Theory Network Model," which we co-authored with Professors June Dong and Ladimer S. Nagurney. It was published in SN Operations Research Forum (2020) and is available on the journal's website in its entirety. We also have an article now, in press, entitled, "Competition for Medical Supplies Under Stochastic Demand in the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Generalized Nash Equilibrium Framework," which we co-authored with Professors Dong and Pritha Dutta.  I am very excited about also giving this presentation and my hosts at USC have reached out to me to see whether I would also like to meet with students virtually and I, enthusiastically, agreed.