Operations Research (glossary)

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Operations Research (OR) considers the use of technology by an organization. It is based on mathematical modeling and statistical analysis to optimize decisions on the deployment of the resources under an organizations control. It arises from military planning techniques developed during World War 2.

Operations Research and Management Science (ORMS) was formalized in 1950 by Ackoff and Churchman applying the ideas and techniques of OR to organizations and organizational decisions . (Churchman et al, 1950)


Churchman, C.W., R.L. Ackoff, and E.L. Arnoff. 1950. Introduction to Operations Research. New York, NY, USA: Wiley.


Operations research (OR) and operations research and management science (ORMS) are used interchangeably in many sources. The term operations analysis is used in the UK, especially in defense.

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