UPS George D. Smith Prize Application Process


Any academic unit that includes OR/MS/Analytics in its program is eligible. The applicant must specify the scope of the academic unit that is applying. The cash award must go to the unit that is applying. The parent academic institution of the winner, as a condition of accepting the cash award, must agree not to deduct institutional overhead or to reduce the budget of the program as a result. As part of the application process, the applicant will indicate how they would use the money, preferably in a way that would benefit their students. Although this proposal of use may be general in description, the applicant will be bound by their intent unless they receive permission from the prize committee for specific changes that are proposed in the use of the prize money.

Previous non-winning applicants are encouraged to reapply. Each year's competition will be judged based on the comparative quality of the applicant pool for that year without prejudice for or against an entry based on its possible status as a previous applicant or finalist. Cases for innovation will not be discounted if they have been described in a previous non-winning application.

2025 Applications Deadline November 25, 2024 (11:59pm Pacific) 
(Click here to begin a submission)

Application shall be made by means of a submission packet, which should include the following:

  • A description of the applying academic unit with other basic information such as program history, the nature of the parent academic institution, the number of students enrolled and annually graduated in the program, and the nature of degrees given. 
  • The role of operations research and advanced analytics in the program, and why competency in operations research practice is at least one of the goals of the program.
  • Faculty familiarity and competence in operations research, management science, and analytics practice.
  • A description of what is innovative in their program in regards to O.R. and Analytics practitioner preparation.
  • A summary of why they feel that their students are prepared to be effective practitioners of advanced analytics and operations research, whether or not students choose to become practitioners.
  • Contact information for 2 current and 2 graduated students and permission to contact them for candid assessments of the program.
  • A statement describing the funding sources and scope of the program and how it is used to most effectively achieve the programs' goals. 
  • A statement of the proposed use of the money if awarded.
  • Acknowledgment of future INFORMS Journal on Applied Analytics (formerly Interfaces) article if selected as the winner.
  • Other information and documentation that they feel will support the case that they deserve this award.


Click here to submit for the 2024 UPS George D. Smith Prize


An applicant agrees that, if it is judged to be the winner, it will participate in the fall keynote address, and will submit a draft of a quality article to the prize committee two weeks prior to the fall meeting. The committee will consider the submitted draft to be a "quality article" if the committee is comfortable recommending the article (with possible minor editing) for publication in the journal INFORMS Journal on Applied Analytics (formerly Interfaces) or another appropriate journal.


The designated winner will be presented with an un-engraved trophy at the practice meeting, which will be returned for engraving. The designated winner will be presented with the engraved trophy at the fall meeting if the following two conditions have been met:

1) the required keynote address has been delivered, and

2) the required draft of a quality article has been submitted to the committee.

Failure to meet either of these requirements will result in forfeiture of the trophy, the cash award and future recognition as a UPS George D. Smith Prize winner.

The cash award will be granted after completion of the previous two requirements and, in addition, the receipt of the agreement of the parent institution to respect the conditions of the cash award. If the parent institution refuses to agree to the conditions of the cash award, the cash award will be forfeited, but not the trophy or future recognition as a UPS George D. Smith Prize winner.

2025 Committee Chair

Anne Robinson
[email protected]