Share with your friends


Analytics Magazine

Newsmakers: Midwest ISO earns Edelman honors

May/June 2011


The Edelman-winning team, including Midwest ISO CEO and President John Bear (fifth from right).

The Edelman-winning team, including Midwest ISO CEO and President John Bear (fifth from right).

Moments after Midwest ISO, which manages one of the world’s largest energy markets, won the 2011 Franz Edelman Award for Achievement in Operations Research and the Management Sciences, company CEO and President John Bear was asked how many people comprise his high-end analytics (operations research, i.e. “O.R.”) group.

“That’s a trick question,” Bear said. “In theory, there are 850 of us involved with O.R. All of us — everyone who works for the company — try to focus every day on how can we continuously improve, how can we do things better, how can we move ourselves forward, whether it’s incrementally or fundamentally.”

The Edelman competition, sponsored by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) and considered the “Super Bowl of O.R.,” is an annual event that recognizes outstanding examples of operations research-based projects that have transformed companies, entire industries and people’s lives. The 2011 winner was announced at an awards gala April 11 in conjunction with the INFORMS Conference on Business Analytics & Operations Research in Chicago.

Analytics Magazine Bonus Links
Analytics Magazine See the presentation of Midwest ISO’s award-winning analytics project here:

See Midwest ISO receive the coveted INFORMS Edelman Award here:

Analytics Magazine

For many years, the U.S. power industry consisted of utilities that focused locally and ignored the possibility that there might be better, regional solutions. Midwest ISO was the nation’s first regional transmission organization (RTO) to emerge following the Federal Energy Regulation Commission’s push in the 1990s to restructure and boost efficiency throughout the power industry. Headquartered in Carmel, Ind., Midwest ISO has operational control over more than 1,500 power plants and 55,000 miles of transmission lines throughout a dozen Midwest states, as well as Manitoba, Canada.

Driven by the goal of minimizing delivered wholesale energy costs reliably, Midwest ISO, with the support of Alstom Grid, The Glarus Group, Paragon Decision Technology and Utilicast, used operations research and analytics to design and launch its energy-only market on April 1, 2005, and introduced its energy and ancillary services markets on Jan. 6, 2009.

Midwest ISO improved reliability and increased efficiencies of the region’s power plants and transmission assets. Based on its annual value proposition study, the Midwest ISO region realized between $2.1 and $3.0 billion in cumulative savings from 2007 through 2010. Midwest ISO estimated an additional $6.1 to $8.1 billion of value will be achieved through 2020. The savings translate into lower energy bills for millions of customers throughout the region.

Along with Midwest ISO, the other 2011 Edelman finalists included CSAV (Chilean shipping company), Fluor Corporation, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance.



Using machine learning and optimization to improve refugee integration

Andrew C. Trapp, a professor at the Foisie Business School at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), received a $320,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to develop a computational tool to help humanitarian aid organizations significantly improve refugees’ chances of successfully resettling and integrating into a new country. Built upon ongoing work with an international team of computer scientists and economists, the tool integrates machine learning and optimization algorithms, along with complex computation of data, to match refugees to communities where they will find appropriate resources, including employment opportunities. Read more →

Gartner releases Healthcare Supply Chain Top 25 rankings

Gartner, Inc. has released its 10th annual Healthcare Supply Chain Top 25 ranking. The rankings recognize organizations across the healthcare value chain that demonstrate leadership in improving human life at sustainable costs. “Healthcare supply chains today face a multitude of challenges: increasing cost pressures and patient expectations, as well as the need to keep up with rapid technology advancement, to name just a few,” says Stephen Meyer, senior director at Gartner. Read more →

Meet CIMON, the first AI-powered astronaut assistant

CIMON, the world’s first artificial intelligence-enabled astronaut assistant, made its debut aboard the International Space Station. The ISS’s newest crew member, developed and built in Germany, was called into action on Nov. 15 with the command, “Wake up, CIMON!,” by German ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst, who has been living and working on the ISS since June 8. Read more →



INFORMS Computing Society Conference
Jan. 6-8, 2019; Knoxville, Tenn.

INFORMS Conference on Business Analytics & Operations Research
April 14-16, 2019; Austin, Texas

INFORMS International Conference
June 9-12, 2019; Cancun, Mexico

INFORMS Marketing Science Conference
June 20-22; Rome, Italy

INFORMS Applied Probability Conference
July 2-4, 2019; Brisbane, Australia

INFORMS Healthcare Conference
July 27-29, 2019; Boston, Mass.

2019 INFORMS Annual Meeting
Oct. 20-23, 2019; Seattle, Wash.

Winter Simulation Conference
Dec. 8-11, 2019: National Harbor, Md.


Advancing the Analytics-Driven Organization
Jan. 28–31, 2019, 1 p.m.– 5 p.m. (live online)


CAP® Exam computer-based testing sites are available in 700 locations worldwide. Take the exam close to home and on your schedule:

For more information, go to