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  • 10 December 2020 12:46 | Benedikt Zimmermann (Administrator)

    The proceedings of the 2020 Airline Operations Study Group meeting are available now to all our members. Have a look at all the exciting presentations!

  • 23 October 2020 10:56 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    Olivia R. Natan, from the University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA, has been recognized by AGIFORS as Winner of the 2020 Anna Valicek Award and was presented (virtually) with the Silver Anna Valicek Medal for the paper “Incorporating Search and Sales Information in Airline Demand Estimation”.

    Guodong Zhu, from the Iowa State University, Ames, IA, USA, has been recognized by AGIFORS as Second Place Winner of the 2020 Anna Valicek Award and was presented (virtually) with the Bronze Anna Valicek Medal for the paper “Decision Making under Uncertainties for Air Traffic Flow Management”.

    More information on the Anna Valicek Award web page.

  • 20 October 2020 09:00 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    All conference registrants have gotten an email with instructions on how to join the online session on the GotoWebinar platform. If you did not get this email, please check your spam folder. Information for the first day is also posted on the conference web site.

  • 17 October 2020 16:35 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    The 60th AGIFORS Annual Symposium is going to take place online next week, starting on Tuesday 20th October. For information about how to register, the detailed agenda and more, please see the conference web page.

    Some technical information for all participants: You will receive an email from Mike Irrgang on each day of the conference with the link necessary to join the online conference platform. If you do not receive a link please visit the conference web page, where we will post more information on how to join. 

  • 21 August 2020 07:20 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    From a total of 13 submitted articles the 2020 Anna Valicek Award Committee has selected the two finalists for the 2020 Anna Valicek Award

    • Guodong Zhu, Iowa State University, IA, USA: “Decision Making under Uncertainties for Air Traffic Flow Management
    • Olivia R. Natan, University of Chicago, IL, USA: “Incorporating Search and Sales Information in Airline Demand Estimation

    As finalists, they will present their work at the upcoming 2020 AGIFORS Symposium. Then, the AGIFORS Council will select the winner of the 2020 Anna Valicek Award.

  • 09 July 2020 10:49 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    The poll for the 2020 Council election has closed and the following candidates have been elected to the Council for the 2021-2023 term:

    • Zeliha Akca
    • Richard Cleaz-Savoyen
    • Semi Gabteni
    • Laurie Garrow
    • Lisa Noell
    • Eric Ruhlin
    • Benedikt Zimmerman
    Congratulations to all future Council members!
  • 14 June 2020 17:45 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    Voting for the election of the next AGIFORS Council is open starting today, Sunday, 14 June 2020 until Sunday, 5 July 2020. Please see the 2020 Council election page for the list of candidates and a link to the poll. 

    The AGIFORS Council consists of at least eight members and is responsible for governing and administering to the AGIFORS community. The positions on the council currently include President, Vice-President, Past-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Study Group Coordinator, Symposium Chair, Symposium Technical Chair, Membership Secretary, Communications Officer.

    Our current President David Foster will serve as Past President, and seven candidates are elected to the Council by means of this election. Consequently, each AGIFORS Member and Fellow will be able to cast seven votes across the nine candidates, with a maximum of one vote per candidate. 

    In addition, the president in consultation with the council can appoint additional members to the council who provide necessary services in the best interest of the organization.  It is then the responsibility of the council itself to assign the various positions based on each member’s interest and qualifications.

    Short bios of each candidate and their involvement with AGIFORS so far can be found here.

  • 09 May 2020 06:02 | Jonas Rauch (Administrator)

    AGIFORS is an all-volunteer organization and its continued success and growth relies on the support of our members. Everyone is encouraged to play an active role. Serving on the Council is a rewarding way for members to give back to the OR community by sharing your time, experience, and ideas.

    AGIFORS invites all qualified members to consider running for a seat on the council for the 2021-2023 term.

    The Council consists of at least eight members and is responsible for governing and administering to the AGIFORS community. The positions on the council currently include President, Vice-President, Past-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Study Group Coordinator, Symposium Chair, Symposium Technical Chair, Membership Secretary, Communications Officer. In addition, the president in consultation with the council can appoint additional members to the council who provide necessary services in the best interest of the organization.

    Members are elected to the council, and it is the responsibility of the council itself to assign the various positions based on each member’s interest and qualifications.

    Within the guidelines set forth by our constitution, we are hereby accepting nominations for the upcoming AGIFORS Council elections. If you wish to nominate someone (including yourself), please submit your nomination at Council Nominations or through the following link https://forms.gle/dN36KaCPpCQSZ5xCA until May 15, 2020.

    On the form, please include the following information about the proposed candidate:

    • Full Name

    • Contact information (email, phone)

    • Affiliation (Airline, University, Company (solution vendor, consultancy))

    • AGIFORS involvement (presenter, attendee at study groups and/or symposium)

    • A brief summary (100 word max) of why the nominated candidate is suitable for serving on the council

    Please note that only candidates that have been full AGIFORS members for at least 5 years are qualified to stand for election.

    The election process will be administered online during the months of May/June 2020, and the general AGIFORS community will be given the opportunity to ‘meet’ each candidate through online profiles/biographies. The polls will remain open for at least two weeks, and the final results will be communicated back to the community before the start of the 60th Annual AGIFORS Symposium scheduled for this fall in Toulouse.

    If you may have any questions or to want to learn more about serving on the Council, please don’t hesitate to contact AGIFORS Secretary John-Paul Clarke (secretary@agifors.org), AGIFORS President David Foster (president@agifors.org), or any of the current council members.

  • 15 April 2020 11:13 | Richard Cleaz-Savoyen (Administrator)

    AGIFORS’ Anna Valicek Award competition is destined to recognize original and innovative research in the application of operations research to airline and/or airline related business problems. We invite you to submit your research paper before June 1st, 2020!
    Refer to the
    Anna Valicek page for more details on the criteria and eligibility.

  • 11 April 2020 15:23 | David Foster (Administrator)

    Dear AGIFORS Members and Friends,

    Most importantly, I hope this letter finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy. As we continue to navigate through this unprecedented situation, I know many of you are wondering about how this pandemic might affect AGIFORS, both now and in the future. Unfortunately, in many instances, the answer is simply “we don’t know yet.” However, I will try my best to answer some of the questions that I know you must have.

    Study Group Meetings

    As many of you already know, we have had to cancel all our Study Group meetings this spring. We were excited to once again have a full set of meetings around the world. Planning for Crew Management in Istanbul (hosted by Turkish Airlines), Revenue Management in Helsinki (hosted by Finnair) SSP in Dallas/Fort Worth and the Airline Operations/Aircraft Maintenance joint meeting in Oman (hosted by Oman Air) were well underway when we had to make the decision to cancel. At this time, for a variety of reasons, we are not planning to reschedule them but will skip them this year and resume them as usual in Spring 2021. Nonetheless, as an alternative, we are exploring hosting virtual meetings to replace this year’s physical meetings; more on that later in this letter.

    The good news is that all the host airlines agreed to remain as hosts next year as well as all the hotels. Therefore, we will still be going to those locations, albeit in 2021. New dates will be announced later this year. The meetings are always interesting and informative but should be especially so next year as we talk about how we went about winding-down our respective airlines and how we addressed (and continue to address) issues with ramping back up. We look forward to seeing you all next year.

    Many thanks go to all the study group chairs, Marcel Sol (QR), Samuel Rosat (Ivado Labs), Virginie Lurkin (Eindhoven), Hunkar Toyoglu (McKinsey), Cumhur Gelogullari (AA), Yuxi Xiao (AA), Michael Irrgang (Boeing), Judith Semar (LH), Rod Tjoelker (Boeing) and Mei Zhang (AA), for all their hard work on first organizing and then canceling the meetings.

    Annual Symposium

    As I write this letter, we are still planning to hold the 60th Annual Symposium as scheduled from 14 to 17 September in Toulouse, France with Air France/KLM and Airbus as our hosts. AGIFORS was founded in 1960 by Air France and KLM, among others, and the first annual symposium was held in the south of France, so we are looking forward to celebrating our 60th birthday at the same location hosted by our founders. That said, while we are going to continue to proceed with our planning, we will follow the lead of governments and public health experts to determine if it is safe and appropriate to meet. I cannot emphasize this enough – the health and safety of our members and our entire global community is our number one priority and that will be our guiding principle as we decide if and when to hold the conference. Semi Gabteni (OpenAirlines) and Rodrigo Acuna-Agost (Amadeus) will be sending out updates as they become available.

    Anna Valicek Competition and Ken Wang Scholar Program

    We are also proceeding with both the Anna Valicek Competition and the Ken Wang Scholar program. This will happen even if the symposium is cancelled. Traditionally, the two Anna Valicek finalists present their papers at the symposium.  While we hope that will be possible this year, we will make alternative arrangements if necessary, to select the Silver and Bronze medals this year. Be on the lookout for the official announcement from our competition director, Richard Cléaz-Savoyen (AC), soon.

    While we are also looking forward to announcing our first Ken Wang Scholars at the symposium, regardless of what the future holds, we will be selecting two recipients this year. More on that to come from Dr. Laurie Garrow (Georgia Tech).

    Virtual Study Group Meetings

    As we cannot meet in person this year, we are exploring the possibility of holding a virtual conference. Airline Operations and Maintenance Operations are taking the lead in organizing one and working out the technical and practical logistics. We are still working on the challenges of presenting to a globally dispersed audience in multiple time zones while keeping the intimacy of live interactions and selecting the best technology to use. More details will be posted on our website (agifors.org) as soon as they are available. If you are interested in participating or helping to organize it, please contact the organizers at ops@agifors.org.

    If successful and there is enough interest, we may expand the concept to other groups.

    Council Elections

    This year we will also be holding elections for the Council. Every Council member is elected for a three-year term with the new Council taking office immediately on the conclusion of the annual symposium. Later this year, we will be electing seven new officers to run our organization. Officers are elected to the Council as a whole and must include at least four airline employees. At the first council meeting, the new council will select the president, treasurer and all other positions from those elected. A request for nominations will be issued soon. If you have been a member for at least five years, we hope you consider running.

    Financial Impact on AGIFORS

    Fortunately, we entered this year with a good financial reserve. As an all-volunteer organization, our overhead costs are minimal.  Moreover, as a non-profit, we run our meetings with the goal of breaking even. As the extent of the pandemic became clear, we were able to cancel our Spring meetings before we incurred any significant non-refundable costs. In addition, the hotel sites have worked with us to apply any deposits we may have already made to next year’s meetings. Thanks to the hard work of our Treasurer, Eric Ruhlin (UA), and all the Study Group chairs, the financial impact on AGIFORS has been manageable.

    In closing, I would just like to acknowledge that this is a devastating situation for so many people across the world and for the airline industry. Never in my lifetime (and I was born at the dawn of the jet age)  have so few people in America flown on any given day as they did this week, and for the first time since the Wright brothers, no one anywhere in the US was building a commercial airplane. Nonetheless, I know we will recover and find ways to once again succeed. We are in the business of Connecting the World (or Uniting the World, according to my friends in Chicago) and before long people will start flying again. As the industry reboots itself, new problems (as well as all the old ones) will need to be solved and the AGIFORS community is ideally positioned to address them. I do not know when that will happen, but I do know this – following the directives of our public health experts is paramount. So please continue to stay at home as much as possible, always practice social distancing and frequently wash your hands. Most importantly, it saves lives. But secondarily, it will help us get back to doing the things that we love to do sooner rather than later. I can’t wait to get to the other side of this and welcome everyone again at our annual meetings and symposium and to hear all the innovative ways we are helping with the industry’s recovery.

    Best wishes,

    David M. Foster
    Delta Air Lines
    President – AGIFORS

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