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We examine how a flexible process structure might be designed to allow the production system to better cope with fluctuating supply and demand, and to match supply with demand in a more effective manner. We argue that good flexible process structures are essentially highly connected graphs, and use the concept of graph expansion (a measure of graph(More)
Authors are encouraged to submit new papers to INFORMS journals by means of a style file template, which includes the journal title. However, use of a template does not certify that the paper has been accepted for publication in the named journal. INFORMS journal templates are for the exclusive purpose of submitting to an INFORMS journal and should not be(More)
One key factor contributing to emergency department (ED) overcrowding is prolonged waiting time for admission to inpatient wards, also known as ED boarding time. To gain insights into reducing this waiting time, we study operations in the inpatient wards and their interface with the ED. We focus on understanding the effect of inpatient discharge policies(More)
The concept of chaining, or in more general terms, sparse process structure, has been extremely influential in the process flexibility area, with many large automakers already making this the cornerstone of their business strategies to remain competitive in the industry. The effectiveness of the process strategy, using chains or other sparse structures, has(More)
There are two dimensions to process flexibility: range versus response. Range is the set of states that a system can adopt, while response is the ease with which the system switches from state to state. Although both dimensions are important, the existing literature does not analytically examine the response dimension visa -vis the range dimension. In this(More)
This paper studies a distribution system consisting of multiple retail locations with transshipment operations among the retailers. Due to the difficulty in computing the optimal solution imposed by the transshipment operations and in estimating shortage cost from a practical perspective, we propose a robust optimization framework for analyzing the impact(More)
In this paper, we present a problem in international shipping which combines the ship routing problem with inventory considerations. A fleet of ships is responsible for the transportation of a given commodity between a supply port and the demand ports. Their routes should be selected so that the total transportation cost and the inventory cost is minimized.(More)