Monthly Archives: November 2015

Journal submissions!

This week at the analytics lab have made some great progress with respect to research productivity.  We have one major revision re-submitted to an excellent journal.  As well as a major collaborative article written to define a new sub-field of study within the area of resilience.

Objective Scaling Ensemble Approach for Integer Linear Programming

INFORMS Journal on Computing

INFORMS Journal on Computing

Dr. Nicholson and Weili Zhang have just completed a submitted a revision of their work “Objective Scaling Ensemble Approach for Integer Linear Programming” as an original article to INFORMS Journal on Computing (IJOC).

IJOC is a top tier journal that publishes papers in the intersection of operations research (OR) and computer science (CS).   The article introduces a new heuristic method for application to IP problems.  Weili Zhang is the lead author on this beauty of an idea. In the paper we develop the idea and apply it to a wide variety of linear IP problems: from network design to open-pit mining; from vehicle routing to protein folding.  The technique was demonstrated to be competitive with the battery of heuristics used in the best commercial solver software.  Hopefully, the reviewers will agree with us!

Defining Resilience Analytics

Risk Analysis Journal

Risk Analysis

Dr. Nicholson along with Dr. Kash Barker (OU),  Dr. Cornelia Caragea (UNT), Dr. James Lambert (UVA), Dr. Laura McLay (Univ of Wisconsin), Dr. Chris Zobel (Virginia Tech), Dr. Andrea Tapia (Penn State), and Dr. Jose Ramirez-Marquez (Stevens Institute) have collaborated on their first article relating to the recent NSF award.  The perspectives paper entitled “Defining Resilience Analytics” has been submitted to Risk Analysis, an official international publication of the Society for Risk Analysis.  This is hopefully, the first of many for this team.

Divided Neighborhood Exploration Search for Reverse Engineering the Gene Regulatory Network

Finally, Dr. Nicholson, Dr. Corey Clark (SMU), and Leslie Goodwin (Deloitte Consulting) are finalizing their work on reverse engineering the gene regulatory network (GRN).   Credit definitely goes to Leslie Goodwin for her amazing idea and application. The new technique outperforms the current standard in metaheuristic search for inferring GRNs — in both speed and quality. The current version of the paper is near completion and should be submitted by the first of December.

It has been a good week!

Optimal Flow AnalysisCIE

This is all in addition to a recent submission to Computers and Industrial Engineering – “Optimal Flow Analysis” another paper by Weili Zhang and Dr. Nicholson.  This paper takes a statistical learning approach to evaluating, characterizing, and predict solutions to a traditional optimization problem, the fixed-charge network flow problem.  We presented this work at a recent INFORMS conference as well as one of the more promising applications — the paper regarding the application technique is well underway and should be submitted before the end of the year!

Community Resilience Semi-Annual Meeting

Semi-Annual Meeting of the Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning: A NIST-funded Center of Excellent

The Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning (a NIST-funded Center of Excellence) is holding its semi-annual all-center meeting in Gaithersburg, MD on November 5-6 2015.

COE Resilience Meeting

Semi-Annual Meeting Attendees in Gaithersburg, MD, November 2015

The Center Team is composed of more than 90 individuals, including researchers, programmers/developers, NIST collaborators, postdoctoral scholars, and graduate students from the various University Partners. Working closely in teams on more than 40 tasks, the Center of Excellence will provide a common data architecture by collaborating with the National Center for Supercomputing Applications to ensure that data from around the world can be seamlessly integrated into a robust computational environment known as NIST-CORE. NIST-CORE will allow users to optimize community disaster resilience planning and post-disaster recovery strategies intelligently using physics-based models of inter-dependent physical systems combined with socio-economic systems.  — Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning website

Professors Naiyu Wang (CEES), Amy Cerato (CEES), and Charles Nicholson (ISE) from the University of Oklahoma are attending along with five students and post-docs from OU: Weili Zhang, Peihui Lin, Jia Xu, Mohammad Tehrani, and Xianwu Xue.

Dr. Wang is presenting her team’s work regarding infrastructure fragility with respect to various natural disasters.  Dr. Nicholson will be presenting the OU team’s collaborative work (with CSU and Texas A&M)  to support optimization modeling for various mitigation strategies that impact engineering, economic, and social science vulnerability measures.  In addition, the work, algorithms, and concepts generated at the NIST-funded OU CORE Lab (Analytics Lab + CEES Lab) are making a significant impact.

It is very interesting to view the various presentations by other teams — work from the OU group has permeated and influenced several project teams across the center.  At any point you might see someone, who you’ve never met, presenting their project work and then all-of-sudden during the presentation one of Weili’s or another OU student’s work pops-up.   I am proud to hear how often our students and their work is being referenced.  The COE team is of the highest caliber; for these various experts to respect our student’s work says a lot about the quality we have at OU. – Charles Nicholson

The two-day meeting includes numerous presentations and detailed discussions on a variety of natural hazards and hazards modeling, resilience indicators, performance metrics, interdependency, and data requirements across a broad, interdisciplinary team.