Group for Research in Decision Analysis

The last issue of the Newsletter is now available. Enjoy!
* Spotlights on ... - GERAD’s development: A family history
* Actions and interactions - Epidemic models and the COVID-19
* Impact papers - O. Arslan et al’s, Intercepting the unlawful vehicles in transportation networks
* Collaborations - Incentivizing commuters to carpool: A large field experiment with Waze
* Where are they now? - Loïc Bodart, Tekogan Hemazro, Filippo Malandra
* Postdoctoral fellows - Imène Benkalai, Shuang Gao, Paulin Jacquot, Aleksandr M. Kazachkov

The third edition of the scientific writing activity just ended. The goal of this activity is to experiment the publication process of a scientific paper by mimicking the submission of a paper and peer reviewing. This year again, several students took part in the activity to develop their writing skills. The final submissions have been evaluated by a jury of professors that have highlighted the high quality of the works submitted. We wish to congratulate the winners of this year’s activity:

  • 1st place, tie: Gabriel Homsi for his paper "Dynamic and Stochastic Rematching for Ridesharing Systems: Formulations and Reductions"
  • 1st place, tie: Jørgen Skålnes for his paper "A new formulation for the inventory routing problem"
  • 2nd place: Peyman Kafaei for his paper "Deep Q-learning for simultaneous Beam Orientation and trajectory optimization for Cyberknife"
  • 3rd place: Nazgol Niroumandrad for her paper "A Reinforcement Tabu Search Algorithm"
  • Honorable mention: Tayeb Mhamedi for his paper "A Branch-Price-and-cut algorithm for the two echelon vehicle routing problem with time windows"

A summary of the winners’ work is available hereafter.

Congratulations are in order for all the participants of this year and for the quality of their work! We welcome all students to join us next year for the fourth edition of the writing activity!

The organizers,
Marilène, Matthieu and Rosemarie 

Maxime Larocque, a graduate of the Master of Business Intelligence (MSc) program, has received the 2019 Best Master’s Thesis Award.

Maxime Laroque’s thesis, "Sélection objective de variables à l’aide d’algorithmes génétiques ensachés" (Bagged genetic algorithms for objective variable selection), was co-directed by professors Jean-François Plante and Michel Adès (UQAM). The key innovative approach that was used and impressed the jury was founded on thorough, high-quality work.


Mehmet Gumus, Associate Professor at McGill University, created a web app for Covid-19 Analytics so that it calculates the expected end-date for COVID-19 for each country on a real-time basis. The expected end-date for each country is calculated based on the weekly geometric average of daily growth rates. At every hour, he receives new information and update his end-date prediction accordingly. Also, he calculates the expected end-date only for the countries whose new cases are trending down.

Here is the link for the updated website:

Despite the confinement to which we are currently subject (April 2020), GERAD wishes to mark the birthday of our colleague Pierre Hansen, who celebrated his 80th birthday in late March 2020. Pierre Hansen has been a member of GERAD since the early 1990s, when he joined the faculty of HEC Montréal. He was also director of GERAD from 1996 to 2001. Since 2004, he holds the Data Mining Chair at HEC Montréal.

Pierre Hansen’s work focuses on several themes, in particular metaheuristics (including the so-called Variable Neighborhood Search approach), non-convex quadratic programming, mathematical chemistry and computer-assisted scientific discovery. In addition, his work can be applied to many disciplines and thus presents a remarkable multidisciplinary character. Finally, his work is widely cited: Pierre Hansen has accumulated nearly 38,300 citations in his career with an h-index of 85, according to Google Scholar.

His scientific excellence has earned him numerous recognition, including the 1986 EURO Gold Medal and the 2013 HEC Montréal Grand Prize for Research. He is also a member of the International Academy of Mathematical Chemistry and the Royal Society of Canada.

GERAD is therefore particularly proud to count such a researcher among its members.

Happy birthday, Pierre!

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Edouard Wagneur.
Thank you for reading the following message from Jean-Jacques Loiseau.

To all participants of Optimization Days 2020,

GERAD and the Optimization Days organizing committee take the evolution of the Coronavirus epidemic very seriously and follow closely the directives of the governments of Québec and Canada regarding travel and social events restrictions.

With the health and well-being of all in mind, it is with regret that we decided to cancel Optimization Days 2020.

We hope everyone stays healthy and we look forward to welcoming you to Montreal for Optimization Days 2021.

The Optimization Days 2020 organizing committee

In the context of the measures put in place to reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus, our team will be teleworking and the face-to-face research activities are suspended until further notice. Our offices will be closed. We invite members to conduct their meetings online or by phone whenever possible.

We ask you to respect the Québec public health governmental directives ( as well as those of your university.

We therefore remain available and continue our ongoing operations. Adjustments to upcoming training and events, if any, will be communicated.

Thank you for your collaboration.

Consult the latest directives:
HEC Montréal affiliate university:
Our offices (Université de Montréal):