Martin L. Ernst

ORSA President, 1960

Martin L. Ernst, a founding member of ORSA, was the Society’s 9th President. He was previously Secretary of the Society. He contributed greatly to the international operations research community through his work for IFORS. He also published contributions to the philosophy and technical content of operations research. He was awarded the Kimball Medal in 1977. He was elected a Fellow of ORSA posthumously in 2002.

As a leader in the profession and practice of operations research, Dr. Ernst’s contributions spanned many decades of research and problem solving activity. His professional contributions and administrative skills have made a broad impact in military services: Operations Analysis Division, U.S. Army Air Corps; Operations Evaluation Group and Chief of Naval Operations, and the U.S. Navy. He is also recognized for the studies he conducted for such government agencies as the National Science Foundation (study on the effective use of emerging information technology), and the Office of Telecommunications Policy where he examined trends in telecommunications applications and regulation. Dr. Ernst also served as the V.P. for management Sciences at Arthur D. Little. In the industry setting, Dr. Ernst studied logistics, large-scale information and control systems, and electronic funds transfer.

After completing his PhD in 1941 he was employed at MIT's Radiation Laboratory. Dr. Ernst’s research covered both complex physical and operational systems. During World War II, he was involved in the analysis of problems of airborne radio and radar. A notable accomplishment during his post-war career was the design of a patented automatic traffic control computer, one of the earliest applications of computers to automatic air traffic control.

Martin Ernst died in 2001.

SB (Physics) MIT, PhD (Physics), 1941, MIT

Martin L. Ernst's Awards