Research Group


Current PhD Students:


Hideaki Nakao (2016-present)
Topic: Distributionally robust optimization approaches for dynamic and multi-objective systems.


Xian Yu (2017-present)


Huiwen Jia (co-advised by Cong Shi; 2018-present)


Xinyu Fei (2019-present)


Kati Moug (2019-present)


Kevin Smith (co-advised by Brian Denton; 2020-present)

Former PhD Students:


Zhihao Chen, PhD, May 2016.
Thesis: “Strategic network planning under uncertainty with two-stage stochastic integer programming.” [link]
First position: Amazon.


Yan Deng, PhD, May 2016.
Thesis: “Decomposition algorithms and parallel computing for chance-constrained and stochastic integer programs with applications.” [link]
First position: Google.


Kayse Maass (PhD advisor: Prof. Mark Daskin, 2012-2017)
Thesis: “Mitigating hard capacity constraints in facility location modeling.”
First position: Visiting scholar, Supply Chain and Operations Department, Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
Current position: Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Northeastern University.


Yuchen Jiang (co-advised by Prof. Cong Shi; 2013-2018)
Thesis: “Supply chain and revenue management for online retailing.” [link]
First position: Uber.


Yiling Zhang (2015-2019)
Thesis: Convex nonlinear and integer programming approaches for distributionally robust optimization of complex systems.
First position: Assistant Professor in ISE at the University of Minnesota (starting in 2019 Fall).


Miao Yu (2016-2020)
Thesis: “Optimization approaches for mobility and service sharing.”
First position: Ford Motor Company.

Supervised Marian Sarah Parker Scholars (Undergraduate) through WISE:


Amanda Hazel (Summer 2012)
Topic: “Using Network Optimization Tools for Shelter Relief in Haiti.”
Recognition: Finalist of the Undergraduate Technical Paper Competition in 2013 IIE Great Lakes Regional Conference.


Joy Chang (Summer 2015)
Topic: “Optimizing Environmental Impacts and Social Welfare of Car Sharing.”
Recognition: 2016 INFORMS Undergraduate Operations Research Award, First Place.

Group News

  • 09/2020, Shen gave a seminar talk titled “Optimization and data analytics tools for addressing COVID-19 related problems,” in the graduate seminar series in the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at University of Oklahoma.

  • 09/2020, PhD student Huiwen Jia receives the 2020 Michigan Institute for Computational Discovery and Engineering (MICDE) student fellowship. Congratulations, Huiwen!

  • 08/2020, PhD student Kati Moug receives the 2020 IOE Bonder Fellowship. Congratulations, Kati!

  • 08/2020, we build a website to provide a collection of optimization and data analytics tools for addressing COVID-19 related problems (including the Bluebus route and schedule redesign project and others related to optimizing testing locations, distribution of testing kits, business reopening or closedown strategies, and so on).

  • 08/2020, Shen's team applied integer programming and simulation to help redesign the University of Michgian's Campus bus systems to reduce trip time, bus capacity and infection risk. (News link)

  • 07/2020, a new PhD student Kevin Smith (co-advised with Brian Denton) joins our research group. Welcome, Kevin!

  • 06/2020, Shen receives support from Microsoft's AI for Health program for using free Azure credits to build a cloud-based system that will facilitate COVID-19 testing system design. (News link)

  • 04/2020, Shen completed an article on the Conversation about how to design and perform COVID-19 testing when supplies are scarse.

  • 03/2020, Shen completed an article on "A Summary of Operations Research and Industrial Engineering Tool for Fighting COVID-19" . A shorter read is here on Medium. The PDF slides are here (presented on April 2 in the IOE lunch-and-learn event).

  • 02/2020, Miao Yu successfully defended his PhD thesis. Congrats, Miao!

  • 02/2020, PhD alumni Yan Deng and current PhD student Huiwen Jia's paper titled “Scenario grouping and decomposition algorithms for chance-constrained programs” is accepted for publication in INFORMS Journal on Computing. Congrats!

  • 01/2020, Huiwen Jia's paper titled “Context-aware Route Recommendation with Weight Learning through Deep Neural Networks” is accepted to appear in the proceedings of 2020 American Control Conference (ACC2020). Congrats, Huiwen! This is a collaborative work with Didi Chuxing.

  • 01/2020, Shen is invited to give a plenary talk titled “New results of facility location involving competition, prioritization, and ambiguous decision-dependent uncertainty,” in the “Workshop on Smart Cities Optimization” organized by Fields Institute at the University of Toronto, Canada, January 2020. [link]

  • 12/2019, Hideaki Nakao's paper “Nonprofit resource allocation and service scheduling with cross-subsidization under uncertain resource consumption” is accepted for publication in OMEGA (The International Journal of Management Science). Congrats, Hideaki!

  • 09/2019, Xian Yu is one of the 2019-2020 MICDE fellowship recipients, who are honored because of ‘‘their exceptional academic record and the outstanding promise of their research in computational sciences.’’ Congrats, Xian!

  • 09/2019, former PhD student Yiling Zhang (now Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota) received honorable mention of the 2019 INFORMS Optimization Society Best Student Paper Award for her paper published on SIAM Journal on Optimization. Congrats, Yiling!

  • 09/2019, new PhD students Xinyu Fei and Kati Moug, and undergraduate student Jodi Yip join our research group. Welcome, Xinyu, Kati, and Jodi!

  • 08/2019, Xian Yu's paper “An integrated decomposition and Approximate Dynamic Programming approach for on-demand ride pooling” is accepted for publication in IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems. Congrats, Xian!

  • 07/2019, Xian Yu and Huiwen Jia have been awarded the Mixed-Integer Programming (MIP) Workshop Student Travel Grant to present their posters in this year's MIP Workshop 2019 at MIT. Congrats, Xian and Huiwen!

  • 06/2019, Miao Yu's paper “An integrated car-and-ride sharing system for mobilizing heterogeneous travelers with application in underserved communities” is accepted for publication in IISE Transactions. Congrats, Miao!

  • 04/2019, Yuchen Jiang's paper “Service-level constrained inventory system” is accepted for publication in Production and Operations Management. Congrats, Yuchen!

  • 04/2019, Shen receives funding from Ford Motor Company to design integrated ridesharing and goods delivery system. [news link]

  • 03/2019, Shen along with Yafeng Yin (UM CEE) and Yiheng Feng (UMTRI), receives funding from USDOT Center for Connected Automated Transportation (CCAT) for a collaborative research project that aims to reduce traffic and congestion in metropolitan and urban areas. [news link]

  • 03/2019, Yiling Zhang successfully passes her PhD defense. She will start as an Assistant Professor in the ISE Department at the University of Minnesota this fall.

  • 02/2019, Yiling Zhang is awarded the IOE Outstanding Student Award (a.k.a. Towner Prize for Distinguished Academic Achievement). Congrats, Yiling!

  • 12/2018, Shen leads a team that receives funding from Didi Chuxing to study robust route planning. [link].

  • 10/2018, Miao Yu's paper “An approximation algorithm for vehicle routing with compatibility constraints” is accepted for publication in Operations Research Letters.

  • 09/2018, new PhD student Huiwen Jia joins our research group. Welcome!

  • 08/2018, Yiling Zhang's paper “Ambiguous chance-constrained binary programs under mean-covariance information” is accepted for publication in SIAM Journal on Optimization.

  • 06/2018, Shen gave invited talks about “Integerated car-and-ride sharing (CRS) system for serving underserved populations” in Tsinghua University, Peking University, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, and Didi Chuxing in China.

  • 05/2018, the paper “Chance-constrained surgery planning under conditions of limited and ambiguous data”, co-authored by PhD alumnus, Yan Deng, Shen, and Denton, is accepted for publication in INFORMS Journal on Computing.

  • 04/2018, Yiling Zhang is awarded the IOE Murty Prize for Best Research Paper on Optimization.

  • 03/2018, Yiling Zhang's paper “Solving 0-1 semidefinite programs for distributionally robust allocation of surgery blocks” is accepted for publication in Optimization Letters.

  • 03/2018, Yiling Zhang, Miao Yu, and Shen will present in the INFORMS Optimization Society Conference in Denver on March 23-25, 2018.

  • 03/2018, Shen gave an invited talk in the Distributionally Robust Optimization (DRO) workshop in Banff International Research Station (BIRS).

  • 12/2017, Hideaki Nakao receives Rackham International Fellowship.

  • 10/2017, Yiling Zhang publishes a paper “Integer programming approaches for appointment scheduling with random no-shows and service durations” in Operations Research, co-authored with Jiang and Shen.

  • 09/2017, new PhD student Xian Yu and visiting scholar Yang Zhan frong Shanghai Jiao Tong University join our research group. Welcome!

  • 08/2017, Shen receives Department of Energy (DoE) Early Career Award.

  • 08/2017, Shen leads an NSF grant on developing stochastic optimization models and approaches for designing and operating shared mobility systems under uncertain market demand and budget (co-investigated by Ruiwei Jiang at UM and Mengshi Lu at Purdue University).

  • 07/2017, Shen presents “Self-sustained car-and-ride sharing design and optimization for improving the mobility of underserved communities” in the INFORMS Transportation Science and Logistics Society, the 1st Triennial Conference in Chicago.

  • 07/2017, Shen is a co-PI of a UM proposal team to tackle real-time ridesharing problems in DiDi ChuXing (led by Pascal van Ventenryck, and co-investigated by Viswanath Nagarajan).

  • 07/2017, Shen is a co-PI for an NSF grant on power transmission planning under spatio-temporal uncertainties (led by Pascal van Ventenryck and co-investigated by Eunshin Byon and Ruiwei Jiang).

  • 06/2017, Yiling Zhang receives 2017-2018 MICDE Fellowship.

  • 06/2017, Hideaki Nakao presents a poster “On continuous mixing cuts for two-stage mean-risk stochastic mixed-integer programs” in the 2017 Mixed Integer Programming Workshop, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

  • 06/2017, Miao Yu presents "Minimum makespan vehicle routing problem with compatibility constraint” in the 14th International Conference on Integration of Artificial Intelligence and Operations Research Techniques in Constraint Programming (CPAIOR 2017), Padova, Italy.

  • 04/2017, Shen gives an invited seminar on “Ambiguous chance-constrained bin packing under mean-covariance information” in the Department of IEOR at University of Carlifornia, Berkeley.