Jugal Garg, Rakesh Nagi win INFORMS Koopman Prize


William Gillespie

Professors Jugal Garg and Rakesh Nagi.
Professors Jugal Garg and Rakesh Nagi.

The winning team of the 2021 INFORMS Koopman Prize includes two ISE professors and an alumnus:

  • Omkar Thakoor, formerly MS student at UIUC (now at University of Southern California)
  • ISE Professor Jugal Garg, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Donald Biggar Willett Professor in Engineering and ISE Professor Rakesh Nagi, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The winning paper is "Multi-Agent UAV Routing: A Game Theory Analysis with Tight Price of Anarchy Bounds," IEEE Transactions on Automation, Science and Engineering, January 2020, Vol. 17(1), pp. 100-116.

The team studied the loss of efficiency of a fleet of unmanned aerial surveillance vehicles when each vehicle acts independently versus a fleet that operates as a centralized system, with each vehicle acting under the command of an omniscient planner.

They write, "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are becoming increasingly popular for information collection tasks in defense and civilian applications alike. When the collection area is large, it is not unusual that a fleet of UAVs is deployed. Routing of a fleet can be performed in a centralized or decentralized manner. Decentralized routing might be the only possibility when centralized situational awareness is not possible due to bandwidth limitations and centralized optimal routes for each UAV in the fleet are too complex to compute."

To help the fleet manager, they develop price of anarchy bounds on the loss of optimality due to decentralization under various parameters of the problem.

This Prize was named after Bernard Koopman, a founding father of military operations research. It is awarded for the outstanding publication in military operations research of the previous year. The award is accompanied by a plaque and a $500 honorarium. \

With more than 12,000 members from around the world, INFORMS is the largest association for the decision and data sciences, made up of professionals and students. INFORMS members support organizations and governments at all levels as they work to transform data into information, and information into insights that lead to more efficient, effective, equitable, and impactful results. 

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