Decision Science Digest: April 2, 2024

BALTIMORE, MD, April 2, 2024 –

EDITOR’S NOTE: Decision Science Digest is a periodic communique highlighting recent peer-reviewed research published by INFORMS, the largest association for the decision and data sciences, across its 17 journals. This issue highlights four press releases based on the findings of new peer-reviewed articles.

  • New Research Finds COVID-19 Lockdowns Should Have Come Earlier, People Don’t Take Them Seriously (INFORMS journal Manufacturing & Service Operations Management)
  • Utilizing Data and Analytics in Wildfire Response: The New Framework That Could Enhance Efficiency in Response and Policies (INFORMS journal Information Systems Research)
  • Are You a Woman Applying for a Job? If the Founder is a Girl-Dad, You Have a Better Shot at Getting Hired! (INFORMS journal Management Science)
  • New Research Identifies Ways to Reduce Energy Consumption Costs of Electric Vehicles by Looking at Driver Speeds (INFORMS journal Transportation Science)

Preparing for the Next Pandemic: New Research Looks at COVID-19 Data, Says Restrictions Need to Come Earlier 

Now that the COVID-19 threat has subsided, researchers are looking at how things were handled to adjust in future scenarios. New research in the INFORMS journal Manufacturing & Service Operations Management finds that health protocols such as lockdowns and social distancing may need to be introduced earlier, and more liberally, so people follow the rules. The study, “No Panic in Pandemic: The Impact of Individual Choice on Public Health Policy,” shows an individual’s activity level is influenced not only by public health policies, but also by one’s perception of how bad the disease really is. Additionally, these interventions cause significant financial losses because of the disruption to regular socioeconomic activities. The authors say strategic planning is required to optimize the timing and intensity of these public health interventions by considering individual responses. They find that the individual equilibrium activity level is higher than the socially optimal activity level because of an individual’s ignorance of the negative externality imposed on others. The authors say implementing lockdown and social distancing policies at moderate disease prevalence may be critical, rather than implementations when the disease prevalence is at its peak level. Link to full article.

Learning from Data: Utilizing a New Framework to Create Better Wildfire Response Strategies

New research in the INFORMS journal Information Systems Research looks at the preparedness and response decisions for wildfire control. The authors say that insights can be derived from the integration of data and models at multiple stages of wildfires, from mitigation to preparedness and response and recovery. Evaluating the impact of strategic decisions on the outcomes of subsequent stages is paramount to determine informed risk management policies. In the paper, “Integrated Decision Support for Disaster Risk Management: Aiding Preparedness and Response Decisions in Wildfire Management,” the researchers develop a framework to do this effectively. In their case study, slight reductions in the preparedness budget showed a resulting disproportionate loss during the response stage, whereas slight increases have little effect unless explicitly directed to control high-consequence scenarios. This case study emphasizes the challenges for integrated information systems that enable the potential of analytical decision support frameworks for disaster risk management. Link to full article.

Male Founders and Female Representation in Ventures: The Impact Their Children’s Gender Has on Decision-making

“Girl dads” typically have more female leaders in their ventures, according to new research in the INFORMS journal Management Science. The paper, “Learning from Their Daughters: Family Exposure to Gender Disparity and Female Representation in Male-Led Ventures,” looks at how male founders’ fatherhood of daughters impacts female representation in their ventures. The researchers say, conditional on the total number of children, fathering an additional daughter versus a son is associated with a 4% increase in female director representation and an 11% increase in female employee representation. This daughter-to-father effect gradually matures as daughters age and socialize in schools and workplaces, and increases as daughters age, suggesting that male founders vicariously learn from their daughters about the constraints women face. Link to full article.

Utilizing Electric Vehicle Driver Speeds to Determine Locations and Numbers of Charging Stations, Leading to Reduced Energy Consumption Costs

Recent work published in the INFORMS journal Transportation Science is helping to reduce energy consumption costs for electric vehicles by looking at car speeds and charging locations. The researchers of the paper, “Modeling and Solving the Traveling Salesman Problem with Speed Optimization for a Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle,” found that by using a variant of the traveling salesman problem with speed optimization for a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, you can optimize the average speed and operation mode for each road segment in the route. Extensive experiments were performed to demonstrate the algorithm’s performance in terms of computing time and energy consumption costs. The researchers found that the solution method can efficiently solve instances with a realistic number of customers and outperforms the benchmark approaches from previous literature. This can lead to significant energy savings and impact the presence and number of charging stations. Link to full article.



As the largest professional association for the data and decision sciences, INFORMS members leverage mathematics and scientific methodologies to help organizations and governments at all levels make better, data-driven decisions. With more than 12,000 professional and student members from around the world, INFORMS members work to transform data into information, and information into insights that save lives, save money and solve problems.




Ashley Smith


[email protected]

Decision Science Digest: April 2, 2024

Media Contact

Ashley Smith
Public Affairs Coordinator
Catonsville, MD
[email protected]

See all Releases