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April 1, 2008 / or4green

Green Planning and the DNC

ppsiCtrOne of the goals of planners of the upcoming US Democratic National Convention in Denver is to make it a green convention. Among the many operational challenges are energy- and environment-related ones such as minimizing carbon emissions from buses, determining the number of bicycles to have on hand, and how to organize volunteers.

An article in the February 2008 issue of ORMS Today, “Preparing for the Democratic Convention”, talks about these and other of the planning challenges the Convention faces. It mentions that a project-based class at University of Colorado Denver (UCD) led by Harvey Greenberg will be working to find solutions to some of these problems. The course has a website that includes some of the works in progress. For instance, the bike program, which appears to be a kind of ride share, is modeled as an inventory management problem. The goal is to minimize the cost of transferring bikes while meeting bike demand at each location. A final report on the various projects is slated for the May issue.
Update: The final results are available from the link above.

Some related info:

– The 2004 Republican National Convention in New York had several green features. Read more about that here.

– For more on ride share programs, see this article from carectomy.com.

– The ORMS Today issue mentioned above has articles on community-based OR and OR applied to human rights. It also describes plans for special sessions at the 2008 INFORMS meeting on topics of societal importance. For more on community-based OR, see this informative Punk RockOR post.

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