New Approaches in Operational Research

Özekin A. (Editor), Yılmaz Soydan N. T. (Editor)

Ekin Yayınevi, Bursa, 2020

  • Publication Type: Book / Vocational Book
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Publisher: Ekin Yayınevi
  • City: Bursa


Operational Research is a discipline that developed during the Second World War. From this aspect, it can be said to be a newly developing field compared to many other disciplines. Over the last thirty years, developments in science and technology, and especially in computer sciences, have brought about developments and new extensions in the classical tools and techniques of Operational Research. Computers have become faster and able to produce practical solutions, which has specifically increased the use of both classical and newly emerging tools and techniques of Operational Research in all fields. Therefore, according to the general opinion, it is very difficult to collectively emphasize the development of Operational Research techniques and to provide a comprehensive perspective on this topic. On the other hand, despite all these developments, we see that classical tools and techniques are still used frequently in Operational Research education, particularly at the graduate level. Therefore, this book aims to include the studies emerging in parallel to the development of Operational Research techniques in recent years. Accordingly, especially graduate students and independent researchers will have a chance to see in detail the applications of these methods, which have newly developed and are used frequently.

At this point, it is not possible to move on without mentioning some areas where new techniques have developed. The problems related to developing countries, the use of the information communication technology infrastructure in these countries, ensuring sustainability at regional and environmental levels, and solving the problems related to the financial system, which have appeared especially as a result of globalization, are the common implementation areas we have recently come across. On the other hand, we see that their implementations are becoming more widespread in areas such as urban planning and transportation within the scope of smart cities emerging in parallel to the increasing world population. The fight against epidemics, which is again another issue that has gained significance with the increasing world population, appears as an important field of implementation. When considered in this context, the new Operational Research methods and tools are becoming more interdisciplinary through the use of learning algorithms such as big data, deep learning, machine learning and artificial intelligence, behavioral algorithms, genetic algorithms, new decision-making methods and simulation techniques, which have developed in recent years. 

The first of the thirteen chapters in the study is a special chapter presented to emphasize the new methods of Operational Research emerging with the developing computer technologies. This chapter is a source bringing together new and comprehensive theoretical information on this topic for researchers working on GAN (Generative Adversarial Networks), one of the deep learning methods.

In the following chapters, the studies on the afore-mentioned implementation areas, in which Operational Research has developed rapidly in recent years, are presented in sequence. In this context, implementations that focus on the solution of developing countries' socio-economic problems resulting from globalization are presented first. In this sense, two important studies on the implementations regarding the effectiveness of the activities and policies of the development agencies, which play a key role in the solution of the socio-economic problems of developing countries, constitute the second and third chapters. These chapters are followed by the fourth chapter, which involves the implementation of the entropy-based EDAS method (Evaluation based on Distance from Average Solution) in the use of new information communication technologies (ICT), which is again of great importance especially for developing countries. In the fifth chapter, the Human Development level, which is a great importance especially for developing countries, is determined by weight restricted input-oriented CCR DEA (Charnes, Cooper & Rhodes, Data Envelopment Analysis) Model. In the sixth chapter, an inverse data envelopment analysis application is presented for enabling regional sustainability in developing countries. Again, considering the financial instruments with increasing diversity due to globalization, the seventh chapter focuses on the fuzzy logic application on portfolio selection, which is an area of implementation that has gained importance, in detail.

The urban transportation applications of Operational Research, which have become significant together with smart cities, constitute the subject of the eighth, ninth and tenth chapters. At this point, these three important studies make crucial contributions to urban transportation using different methods such as game theory and genetic algorithms. The following chapters of the study are allocated to applied studies on epidemics and processes of fighting epidemics, the importance of which has been understood once again, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. At this point, the eleventh chapter comparatively discusses the financial and digital performances of the countries before the pandemic using the MOORA method (Multi-Objective Optimization Method by Ratio Analysis), which is one of the multiple-criteria decision-making methods, whereas the twelfth chapter presents a data mining application that may provide important information in the context of fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. In the last chapter, a bibliometric analysis study on the DEMATEL method (Decision-Making Trial and Evaluation Laboratory), which is one of the multiple-criteria decision-making methods, is mentioned. For us, this study indicates that the multi-criteria decision-making methods that have been studied in the area of Operational Research for a long time continue to progress rapidly. 

It is commonly acknowledged that developments in computer technologies have been in the background of the surprising development of Operational Research techniques over the last two decades. These developments, which were not predictable in those years, have now caused the production of more practical and effective solutions in the implementation areas where Operational Research techniques are used. With the same perspective, it seems quite difficult to predict the solutions to be provided for the changing world problems with the developments that will be experienced twenty years from now and the implementations that will emerge in parallel to these developments. However, it is clear that we will feel the effect of today's developments with their implementations in different areas of human life and the contribution they will make to daily life practices. In this respect, we hope to have made a contribution, even if small, to the continuously developing literature. 

During the preparation of this book, all authors paid attention to using a plain and clear language so that graduate students and independent researchers could make use of it. Furthermore, it was tried to include detailed descriptions of the methods discussed in the chapters. Within the framework of academic ethical rules, all the studies were evaluated in a blind-review system. We would like to thank all the authors who contributed to the study and wish it would be useful for all readers. 



Assist. Prof. Ayça ÖZEKİN                                          Assist. Prof. N.Tuba YILMAZ SOYDAN

Balıkesir Onyedi Eylül University, Turkey                  Marmara University, Turkey