European Study Group 140 – Barreiro, Portugal

ESGI140 @IPSsetubal solving problems on water management services for Infraquinta and on data management during sport events for @lap2go.

The 140thEuropean Study Group with Industry (ESGI140)was held from 4thto 8thJune 2018 at  the Barreiro School of Technology of the Polytechnic Institute of Setúball (IPS), organized by IPS and coordinated by PT-MATHS-IN.

For the 12th year in a row a Study Group was held in Portugal and this year two companies have benefited from the insights of more than 30 experts in different fields of Mathematics.

One of the companies, Infraquinta, is a water utility that manages the water and wastewater services of a well-known tourist place in Algarve. Given its location, socio economic context and seasonality of demand, the company faces very specific challenges and two of them were tackled during the Sudy Group.

The first one was related to the water tariff structure based on consumption profile in a context of climate changes. The company wants to reinforce mechanisms for predictive planning, based on data analysis, in order to face the forecasted decrease in precipitation, especially in warm season.

The second one was about evaluating the water meters performance, using historical data, in order to find out the meter performance breakpoint and when should water meters be replaced.

The other participating company was Lap2Go, a portuguese timekeeping  company for sport events. They use chips to sort out the results of the participants in the events and sometimes, for the road running events with at least a few thousand participants, they use starting waves as a segmentation strategy. A bad strategy may have a very negative impact in the race, such as promoting traffic jams that slow down the running rythm of each participant and, worst of all, making people fall down. The challenge they posed was on how to come up with an appropriate number of waves and a release time between waves in order avoid the participants accumulation during a race.

The companies’ representatives have collaborated with the academics throughout the week, clarifying the challenges and helping to critically analyse the preliminary results. By the end of the week, both academic and industrial participants were quite happy with the achieved results and some further collaborations have been envisioned.

by Raquel Barreira

Dr Raquel Barreira


is the Vice-Dean at EST/BArreiro IPS.

D3EMO Modeling Week – Data Driven Decision Making and Optimisation

The D3EMO Modeling Week on Data Driven Decision Making and Optimization took place on 3rd-7th September 2018 at the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) in Copenhagen, Denmark

It was organised by

–       Prof. Dolores Romero Morales, Professor of Operations Research, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Economics

–       Prof. Emilio J. Carrizosa Priego, Professor of Statistics and Operations Research, University of Seville, Department of Statistics and Operations Research

Problems were presented by

  • AirFrance (Augustine Lombard)
  • Central Bureau voor de Statistiek (Marc Ponsen)
  • DSB (Natalia Rezanova)
  • TESCO (Eleanor Evans and Matthew Fryett)

PhD, PostDoc and researchers from all over the world (Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Italy, Poland, Spain, UK, Vietnam, etc.) attended this modelling week.

On Monday 3rd, after the welcome given by organizers, two companies (TESCO and CBS) presented their problems and the seventeen participants were divided into two groups, one for each problem; we had time until Tuesday evening to study the problem and propose some solution methods. On Wednesday 5th the other two companies (DSB and AirFrance) introduced their two problems and two new groups were formed, which worked together until Thursday evening. 

Companies’ problems can be classified into two macro-category: dealing with a lot of data (forecasting and visualization) and reasoning about the abstract problem (modeling).

During Friday, the last day of the Modeling Week, every group exposed its results, through an oral presentation and some slides; DSB representatives were present. Moreover, also some trainees talked briefly about their research topics. The study group ended in the early afternoon.

All groups analysed deeply the companies’ problems and produced written reports or slides, which will be delivered to the companies. In particular:

–       The TESCO group tried to replicate the company model to forecast the customer daily demand for each product and store of the firm; they implemented some forecasting models after analysing the dataset through queries and statistical methods;

–       The CBS group studied the dataset about air pollution and proposed methods to visualize data in order to have more sociological impact;

–       The DSB group modelled the problem of scheduling cleaning operations of trains in the same way of the company (except for some simplifications), they developed their own instances and also suggested other models and ideas to tackle the problem;

–       The AirFrance group tried to model the planning of aircrafts but had to deal with constraints very difficult to describe mathematically.

Another main outcome the whole modelling week produced was making all of us trainees bond with each other, creating connections that will last in the years to come, as well in other conferences or PhD schools. It was also great and inspiring to see companies really interested to collaborate with universities and research centres, giving us the chance to work on real problems.

By Alice Raffaele


About the Author:

Alice Raffaele is a PhD student in Operations Research from Italy. She is finishing her first year and is interested in OR at 360 degrees. From modelling to polyhedral analysis, but mostly its applications to industrial problems and the interplay between optimisation and data science. She enjoys educational mathematics, i.e. activities and games for children attending primary and secondary schools, to make them discover the beauty of maths and problem solving.


MI-NET, COST Action TD1409, stimulates activities in Switzerland

This September, for the third year in a row, the COST Conference on Mathematics for Industry in Switzerland will be hosted by the Institute of Applied Mathematics and Physics, the Institute of Data Analysis and Process Design and the School of Management and Law at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences ZHAW in Winterthur, Switzerland. The focus of the event this year will be on the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) in industry and finance.

The COST Action MI-NET supports the initiative by sponsoring the conference as in previous years. In 2016 and 2017, the conferences have brought together academics, young researchers, students, and engineers from industry. Therefore, they had a chance to get an overview, to discuss applications, implementations, and existing challenges of the latest technologies.

The conference has grown from 60 participants in 2016 to over 190 participants in 2017. This second year has seen participants from all-over Switzerland, including the French and Italian speaking parts. 50% of our speakers came from within Switzerland, with the remaining 50% from mostly European countries.

In recent years artificial intelligence has gained widespread importance and can be seen in many different fields, ranging from self-driving cars to customer recommendation systems. Therefore, such conferences can cause a notable impact on different fields of industries because researchers and engineers attending events can find solutions to their challenges, and start collaborations more efficiently.

Researchers from different fields have found together and connected with the industry. Several new COST initiatives have been supported by those researchers in fields such as statistics and energy.

Consequently, MI-NET has had great impact on the distribution of “Mathematics for Industry” across Switzerland and future research as well as co-operations in that area.

Author: Pocevicius Matas

A moment from a conference session in 2017

ESGI 139


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ESGI 139 jointly organized by the Technological Institute for Industrial Mathematics (ITMATI) and Spanish Network for Mathematics & Industry (math-in), will be held on 9-13 July in Santiago de Compostela (Spain).

Across a five day workshop, this ESGI will provide a forum for industrial scientists to work alongside academic mathematicians on problems of direct industrial relevance. The 139th ESGI, brings experts from Applied Mathematics, Statistics and Operations Research together to promote the Mathematical Technology transfer to Industry actively seeking research and development projects where mathematics is of particular relevance.

Problems will include:

All the information concerning the event will be continuously updated on the organiser’s website.

Attendance is free, but prior registration is required.

The registration deadline is July 5th, 2018.

COST Action TD1409, Mathematics for Industry Network (MI-NET) co-organizes and co-funds this event.

ESGI 142: the very first ESGI in the Baltic states

This week, scientists from Kaunas University of Technology Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences (KTU MGMF) hold the European Study Group with Industry (ESGI) or Workshop on Mathematical Solutions in Business and Industry in Palanga, Lithuania.

This year the scientists are solving problems presented by these companies: Finpass, SEB, DPD, Aon and SBA Concern.

28 scientists were separated into 5 groups. Each group is solving one problem. Scientists came from different universities and organizations: Howard Science Limited (UK), Oxford University (UK), Belarusian State University (Belarus), Ferdowsi University of Mashhad (Iran), University of Oldenburg, Vilnius University (Lithuania), Vilnius Gediminas Technical University (Lithuania), Kaunas University of Technology (Lithuania).

For more information please visit the organiser’s website.




2018 ECMI Modelling Week


The 32nd ECMI Mathematical Modelling Week will be organized by the Department of Mathematics and Informatics Faculty of Sciences , of Novi Sad Unversity , and will take place on July 15-22, 2018 at University of Novi Sad campus. ECMI has been running annual Modelling Weeks for students since 1988.

For more informations:

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Modelling & Experiments in Drug Delivery Systems (MEDDS)

Mathematical modelling is playing an increasingly important role in the field of medicine through the use of models and simulations.  These represent a useful tool to complement theoretical and experimental work and have the potential to inform personalized approaches for treatment.

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Controlled drug delivery systems have become common in the clinic.  These systems combine a platform or carrier with a drug in such a way that the drug is efficiently released to a target tissue or organ, while maintaining the drug concentration within a therapeutic window. Whilst many such systems have achieved successful results clinically, there remains a number of scientific and technological challenges and an opportunity for further fine-tuning and optimization. Addressing these challenges requires a multi-disciplinary approach.

Dr Sean McGinty, at the University of Glasgow, is hosting a 3 day workshop to bring together theoretical and experimental researchers, industrialists and clinicians working broadly in the area of drug delivery, so that the problems that persist may be identified from an ‘end-user’ point of view, new challenges laid down and successfully tackled.

The scope of the workshop includes (but is not limited to):
♣ Design, testing and optimisation of  drug delivery systems and drug delivery strategies
♣ Identification of drug release mechanisms
♣ Controlled release formulations
♣ Biomaterials, smart polymers and hydrogels
♣ Clinical and industrial challenges
♣ Personalisation and patient-specific modelling
♣ Nanoparticles, microspheres, liposomes and quantum dots
♣ Antibody therapeutics
♣ Pharmacokinetics/Pharmacodynamics (PK/PD)

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Mathematical, computational and experimental approaches are all within scope.
This event will build on the highly successful first edition of MEDDS (Coimbra, 2016), as well as recent symposia at ECMI2014 (Mathematical Modelling of Drug Delivery) and ECMI2016 (Applied Mathematics in Stent Development), with an added emphasis on industrial and clinical participation.  To this end, the workshop will feature an evening problem solving session where interested delegates can tackle a problem brought by industry.
Keynote speakers:
David Saylor (FDA, USA), Paolo Netti (University of Naples Federico II, Italy), Keith Oldroyd (Golden Jubilee National Hospital, UK)

Who Should Attend?

  • Academics working on drug delivery from any discipline: e.g. mathematicians, chemists, biologists, engineers, …
  • Clinicians
  • Industrialists

Key Dates

  • 15 April 2018: Abstract Submission Deadline
  • 1 May 2018: Notification of Acceptance
  • 17 August 2018: Registration closes


For full details please visit the workshop website

Maths helping the numbers add up for industry

Originally published by COST

COST is helping to strengthen the ties between mathematics and industry across Europe. The Mathematics for Industry Network – MI-NET – has been putting mathematicians and industrialists together since 2015, improving best practice thanks to touch points between the two groups throughout COST’s member states.

Academics working in mathematics, from undergraduates to professors, are applying their knowledge to help solve real-world issues affecting industry. Problem-solving workshops provide solutions, while training and secondments are ensuring that younger researchers are reaping the benefits of these ever-improving ties.

MI-NET supports European Study Groups, week-long workshops where practical answers are found for industrial problems using mathematics via brainstorming sessions. Between 60 and 80 mathematicians will look at a problem that, on first sight, has nothing to do with maths. Questions tackled have included, “How do you optimise shoe box size?”and “How can you make a better cup of coffee?” , with answers and strategies devised using the academics’ expertise in mathematics. The Action’s funding is expanding the maths-industry exchange across the continent, as the Chair of MI-NET, Dr Joanna Jordan of the University of Bath’s Institute for Mathematical Innovation, explains.

I was thrilled that MI-NET could enable the first Study Groups ever to be held in Italy and Cyprus ,” she says.  “The first Israeli Modelling Week for postgraduate students took place in July of 2017, and Slovenia hosts its first Study Group in the following September. It will look at an exciting and varied array of real-world problems, from fraud detection in subsidised school meals, to predicting the quantity of meat sold by food manufacturers.”

“This widening participation and the increase in the number of countries across Europe actively involved in industrial mathematics has been the biggest benefit of MI-NET,” Dr Jordan adds.  “I’m delighted that 31 countries are members of MI-NET, which includes 15 of COST’s Inclusiveness Target Countries (ITCs).”

MI-NET is enabling maths to address problems of real social and economic value, and is supporting the development of the next generation of industrial mathematicians. Dr Jordan took part in Study Groups during her PhD and declares: “I found them hugely inspirational. I’m delighted that through MI-NET we can offer this opportunity to more students across Europe.”

MI-NET has worked with a variety of high-calibre industrial partners, including IBM Research and toy manufacturer Engino. Dr Jordan says that they have been “pleasantly surprised” that their issues can be solved by joining forces with mathematicians, but MI-NET is eyeing new challenges with areas such as agriculture and parts of social science yet to use maths as a problem solver.

“We want industrialists to think of mathematicians as their first port of call when tackling new challenges,” she adds. “It’s also important that the Short Term Scientific Missions enable early career investigators to research at an institution or company during a vital phase of their careers.”

MI-NET holds calls for new activities every quarter. It aims to have hosted one event in each of its 31 member countries by the time MI-NET funding ends in 2019. Also in the pipeline is a Study Group handbook, a step-by-step guide to running workshops that will see MI-NET leaving a legacy.

COST Action website:

Project website:

10th IMA International Conference in Industrial Maintenance and Reliability (MIMAR)

The 10th International Conference on Modelling in Industrial Maintenance and Reliability (MIMAR) will take place in Manchester, UK from 13 – 15 June 2018.

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The 10th International Conference on Modelling in Industrial Maintenance and Reliability (MIMAR) will take place in Manchester, UK from 13 – 15 June 2018. This event is the premier maintenance and reliability modelling conference in the UK and builds upon a very successful series of previous conferences. It is an excellent international forum for disseminating information on the state-of-the-art research, theories and practices in maintenance and reliability modelling and offers a platform for connecting researchers and practitioners from around the world.

For further information on the conference, including instructions for authors, please visit the conference webpage.

Continue reading “10th IMA International Conference in Industrial Maintenance and Reliability (MIMAR)”

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