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IBM R&D Labs in Israel

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IBM and scientists in Turkey's Koc University collaborate to optimize logistics and transportation

Koc University and IBM Research – Haifa begin joint research to develop solutions that will help optimize logistics and transportation in Istanbul

IBM announced today that it has begun a joint research initiative with Koc University to develop an online proactive operation management solution in the areas of transport and logistics. The project will address and solve growing challenges in transportation plan execution and supply chain, using real-time analytics and optimization.

Changes in transportation plans are a major challenge faced by supply networks. Within the scope of this project, the researchers will develop methods to detect deviations from the transportation plans that result from shortages, unexpected demand conditions, product promotions, and unforeseen problems in the transport chain. The researchers intend to create advanced algorithms that will identify the presence of deviations and develop 're-optimized' transportation plans, considering alternative actions such as demand management, re-routing of shipments, alternative sourcing and overtime, and flexible work.

"Collaborating with Koc University will enable us to jointly address and solve today's growing challenges in logistics and supply chain using real-time analytics and optimization," noted Oded Cohn, Director of IBM Research - Haifa. "The frequency of changes and the need for businesses to quickly react to these changes and anticipate them is ramping up, posing unique and complex requirements that we can focus on using our combined experience and expertise."

Proactive event monitoring and analytics are playing a vital role in our daily lives and have the potential to dramatically improve operations management and transportation. For example, it is critical to find out what caused an accident or traffic jam, to analyze the effects and suggest alternative solutions to system users, and to provide the most effective solutions to individuals who control this system in real-time and online. The same could be applied to logistics services, production planning, the spread of epidemic diseases, healthcare, IT services, cloud computing, service systems, and many social, economic and industrial systems. "The open collaboration with IBM Research means we can launch this effort using the 21st century's most advanced areas of computing technology," said Professor Metin Turkay who is the Director of Koc University- IBM Supply Chain Research Center, who will lead the project. "Today, processing various types and sizes of data that exist in many areas of our lives, and transforming them into information to be used in decision-making process, is very important."

As noted by Associate Prof. Emre Alper Yildirim, "With this award, we are planning to create an environment where basic conceptual building blocks are discussed, the requirements are determined, and various solution platforms are developed and evaluated. Following the initial two-year first stage, we will consider the development of larger scale joint projects."

Koç University and IBM have a long-standing history of cooperation. Koc University was the first Turkish University awarded an IBM Shared University Research grant, alongside two other IBM SUR grants.

Launched in 2006, IBM's Open Collaboration Research (OCR) program supports strategically important, highly collaborative research projects between IBM and leading universities across a wide range of areas within computer science, engineering, mathematics and other disciplines where open collaboration would accelerate innovation and benefit the world. The program promotes the development of open source software, related industry standards and greater interoperability. The OCR awards program enables multiyear deep collaboration between IBM and university participants and allows faculty to take on new students and obligations. Outcomes of collaborations are open — meaning that results are freely available, and publicly shared — which provides maximum opportunity for others to build on the results.


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