Brenda Dietrich  is an IBM Fellow and Vice President of Emerging Technology in the IBM Watson Group. For over a decade she was the Vice President of Business Analytics and Mathematical Sciences at the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center. In that role she led a worldwide a team focused on mathematics, statistics, data mining, operations research and related fields. This team did basic research and deployment projects that solved difficult business problems, providing new proof points for use of deep analytic methods. She has been the president of INFORMS, the worlds largest professional society for Operations Research and Management Sciences, and is an INFORMS Fellow. She serves on the Board of Trustees of SIAM. She has served on university advisory boards for Northwestern, CMU, MIT, and UC Berkeley, and on advisory boards for NSF sponsored Math Research Institutes. She holds more than a dozen patents, has co-authored numerous publications, and co-edited the book Mathematics of the Internet: E-Auction and Markets. She holds a BS in Mathematics from UNC and an MS and Ph.D. in OR/IE from Cornell. Her personal research includes manufacturing scheduling, services resource management, transportation logistics, integer programming, and combinatorial duality.

Brenda will speak about "Operations Research in the Era of Cognitive Computing."

Abstract: Cognitive computing systems learn and interact naturally with people to extend what either humans or machine could do on their own. They help human experts make better decisions by penetrating the complexity of Big Data. This talk will provide an overview of cognitive computing, discuss current applications of it, and explore the role operations research can play in extending cognitive computing beyond the domain of language based reasoning.

Michael Trick is the Harry B. and James H. Higgins Professor of Operations Research and Senior Associate Dean, Education, at the Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University. A Ph.D. alumni of Georgia Tech, Trick has been at Carnegie Mellon since 1989.  He is a researcher in operations research, with an emphasis on computational integer programming and applications in sports and social choice.  In 2002, he was President of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) and is a Fellow of that society. Trick is the author of more than 50 published papers, and the editor of six collections of refereed articles.  He has consulted with numerous private and government agencies, including Major League Baseball and the United States Postal Service.

Mike's presentation is about "Sports scheduling meets business analytics."

Abstract: Faster computers and algorithms have transformed how sports schedules have been created in practice in a wide range of sports. Techniques such as Combinatorial Benders Decomposition, Large Scale Neighborhood Search, and Brand-and-Price have greatly increased the range of sports leagues that can use operations research methods to create their schedules. With this increase in computational and algorithmic power comes the opportunity to create not just playable schedules but more profitable schedules. Using data mining and other predictive analytics techniques, it is possible to model attendance and other revenue effects of the schedule. Combining these models with advanced schedule creation approaches leads to schedules that can generate more revenue for teams and leagues. These concepts are illustrated with experiences in professional and college sports leagues.