Public Release:  INFORMS awards Wagner Prize to Israel's Yedioth Group for streamlining magazine delivery

Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences

The Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS®), the leading professional association for analytics professionals, today announced that the first place winner of the Daniel H. Wagner Prize judged by CPMS, the association's practice section, is Yedioth Group, the Israeli media company, for analysis that reduced the cost of delivering print magazines at a time when the news industry is facing ever increasing competition from the Internet and social media.

"Recognizing the importance of reducing the cost of delivering print versions of magazines, Yedioth Group used sophisticated analytics and math modeling to produce outstanding results," said Dr. C. Allen Butler, President of Daniel H. Wagner Associates and chair of the Wagner prize committee.

"Matching Supply and Demand via Delayed 2-Phase Distribution at Yedioth Group - Models, Algorithms and IT" is by Retsef Levi, MIT, Yale Herer, Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, and Assaf Avrahami, Yedioth Group. Using in-cycle sales information, the team developed a pooling model of delayed distribution and practical optimization algorithms. Enabled by EDI/RFID systems, the models and algorithms were implemented in Yedioth, the largest media group in Israel, to support distribution decisions of its print magazines. Dramatic reduction in production and return levels were achieved while maintaining the same levels of sales.

The Daniel H. Wagner Prize for Excellence in Operations Research Practice emphasizes the quality and coherence of the analysis used in the practice of operations research and analytics. The late Dr. Wagner strove for strong mathematics applied to practical problems, supported by clear and intelligible writing. This prize recognizes those principles by emphasizing good writing, strong analytical content, and verifiable practice successes.

The Wagner Prize Committee, in an unusual move to credit a strong contender, announced a second-place winner, a healthcare-related submission, "Modeling and Optimizing Emergency Department Workflow", presented by Eva K. Lee, Georgia Institute of Technology and Hany Atallah, Grady Health System and Emory University School of Medicine.

"The joint work that Dr. Atallah and Dr. Lee's team has done is impressive in many ways, including the fact that lives are saved through more efficient use of the Emergency Department," said Dr. Butler. The other four finalists were:

  • SPRINT: Optimization of Staff Management for Desk Customer Relations Services at HERA by Daniele Vigo, University of Bologna, Beatrice Beleggia, Sandro Bosso, Giuseppe D'Aleo, Molino Rosso, HERA, Claudio Caremi, and Angelo Gordini, OPTIT
  • An Integrated Load Planning Algorithm for Outbound Logistics Optimization by Burcu Keskin, Ibrahim Capar, Nickolas Freeman, and Charles Sox, University of Alabama
  • Optimizing Water Distribution Pressure Management at Valley of the Moon Water District by Segev Wasserkrug, Alexey Tsitkin, and Alexander Zadorojniy, IBM Research, Haifa Israel
  • Scheduling the German Basketball League by Stephan Westphal, Institute for Numerical and Applied Mathematics, University of Goettingen The INFORMS Daniel H. Wagner Prize was presented last week at the 2013 INFORMS annual meeting in Minneapolis. Over 4,000 academics and professionals attended the conference.



The Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS®) is the leading professional society made up of the foremost minds in the world of analytics. More than 10,000 members worldwide, including Nobel Prize laureates, turn to INFORMS to provide leading industry best practices, training and events focused on data analytics and operations research. Members of INFORMS work in business, government and academia and represent fields as diverse as airlines, health care, law enforcement, the military, financial services, retail, engineering and telecommunications. The Society serves the scientific and professional needs of operations research analysts, experts in "big data" and analytics, consultants, scientists, students, educators and managers, as well as their institutions. It publishes a variety of journals, hosts conferences, extends certification in analytics (CAP), offers continuing education courses, and provides its members with a large choice of special interest groups and local chapters. Further information about INFORMS can be found online at or @informs.

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