The H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering hosts Brenda Dietrich for its Distinguished Leadership Lecture on Thursday, March 30, 2017. The lecture will take place in the Fuller E. Callaway, Jr. Manufacturing Research Building Auditorium (813 Ferst Drive NW) from 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. A reception will immediately follow.
Dietrich is an IBM Fellow and Vice President. She holds a BS in Mathematics from UNC and an MS and Ph.D. in OR/IE from Cornell. She joined IBM in 1984 and has worked in the area now called analytics for her entire career, applying data and computation to business decision processes throughout IBM. For over a decade, she led the Mathematical Sciences function in the IBM Research division where she was responsible for both basic research on computational mathematics and for the development of novel applications of mathematics for both IBM and its clients. She has been the president of INFORMS, has served on the Board of Trustees of SIAM, and is a member of several university advisory boards. She was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2014.
Her talk “Riding Technology Waves: Perspectives on the Deployment of Operations Research Methods” includes a fly-by of five decades of information technology beginning with its use to automate business processes and extending to its current role in intermediating social processes. The resulting "data exhaust," together with the availability of low cost computing capacity, spawned the age of analytics, the rise of big data, and the birth of cognitive computing. The past, current, and potential role of operations research in these technology waves will be discussed.