The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) is enhancing the Department of Industrial Engineering and Logistics Management (IELM) by introducing decision analytics into its curriculum, opening a new spectrum of job opportunities to the students and allowing them to tackle traditional industries with new vision and knowhow.
IELM will be renamed the Department of Industrial Engineering and Decision Analytics (IEDA) to reflect its growing portfolio of teaching and research in decision analytics – a relatively new domain which involves extensive analysis of data using statistical models, machine learning algorithms, simulation, creative modeling and prescriptive analytic tools for making wise decisions for various problems in modern society.
Apart from a new undergraduate program on decision analytics, which will be introduced in September this year, the department’s existing postgraduate program will also be refined with an emphasis on predictive and prescriptive analytics. Graduates are not only expected to bring new insights and knowhow into sectors like industrial engineering and logistics management, but will also be able to venture into a wide array of domains including financial engineering, consulting, risk management, health care, demand and supply analytics and the design and pricing of products and services.
Officiating IEDA’s inaugural ceremony, HKUST Executive Vice-President Prof Wei Shyy said the relaunch comes at the right time. “Hong Kong has been striving to transform into a knowledge and innovation based economy, I believe our new programs will assist this effort by grooming talents that could address today’s challenges with new skills and thinking.” The ceremony was also marked by the speeches from two distinguished scholars, namely IEDA’s Academic Advisory Board member – Prof David Simchi-Levi of Engineering Systems at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Prof Ye Yinyu, K.T. Li Chair Professor of Engineering at Stanford University, who shared their insights on Online Resource Allocation with Applications to Revenue Management, and Distributionally Robust Stochastic and Online Optimization.
HKUST Dean of Engineering Prof Tim Cheng said IEDA will better align the aspirations of students with societal needs. “Apart from logistics and engineering management, IEDA’s graduates will also be able to source high-value added jobs in banks, insurance companies, consulting-firms, e-commerce, the travel and leisure industry, health-care organizations, as well as working on complex issues arising in advanced manufacturing processes that also require decision analytics.”
IEDA Head and Crown Worldwide Professor of Engineering Prof Guillermo Gallego said that we are seeing the emergence of new technologies and a host of new problems in the knowledge economy where growth is dependent on the creative use of data and technology rather than on factories and other means of production. It is in this challenging new economy that our graduates have to secure rewarding jobs and it is our mission to train them so they can successfully do so.
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