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Zero Hunger Lab and World Food Programme win prestigious Franz Edelman Award

Published: 14th April 2021 Last updated: 15th April 2021

Tilburg University’s Zero Hunger Lab in co-creation with World Food Programme (WFP) has won the Franz Edelman Award, the world’s most prestigious award for achievement in the practice of analytics and operations research. With Amazon and Alibaba amongst the competitors, this year’s competition was quite a challenge.

Zero Hunger Lab’s Koen Peters and Hein Fleuren work together with WFP on OPTIMUS, a mathematical model that calculates the best way to organize food aid for a specific country or region.

Thanks to the OPTIMUS model, in some cases up to 15-20% more people can be fed with the same aid budget. Currently the research of WFP with Zero Hunger Lab is focused on exploring extensions of the Optimus model to make it more robust against uncertain parameters such as prices and capacities.

Six finalists

INFORMS, the leading international association for operations research and analytics professionals, has selected six finalists for the 50th annual Franz Edelman Award for Achievement in Advanced Analytics, Operations Research and Management Science, the world’s most prestigious award for achievement in the practice of analytics and operations research. In all these years that the Franz Edelman Award has existed, there is only 1 institution that has won more than once and that is Tilburg University (now three times: Prof. Hein Fleuren won in 2012 and Prof. Dick den Hertog in 2013). In 2020 the World Food Programme was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The winner was announced on April 13 at the INFORMS gala. See also the INFORMS announcement.

WFP 1
WFP 2
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