The minor where Theory meets Practice in Business. Are you a quant? And
are you ready for testing your quantitative skills and apply your
mathematical knowledge on real-life challenges in business operations?
Then this may be the minor for you!
The minor for quantitative decisions making in business.
The Department of Econometrics and Operations Research of the Vrije
Universiteit Amsterdam offers this minor in collaboration with the
department of Information, Logistics and Innovation in the fall semester
(September-January) starting in the academic year 2016-2017. Real-life
challenges in business operations by applying mathematical analytical
methods and techniques from Operations Research and Operations
Management are at the core of this minor.
By an exciting set of carefully selected courses and business cases, in
this minor you will explore the spectrum of analytics skills required
for becoming successful in decision making in business. These skills
range from identify problems requiring managerial action and translating
managerial decisions into mathematical models, to applying, designing
and programming algorithms for solving the resulting mathematical
problems, to eventually drawing managerial conclusions taking into
account behavioral aspects. After finishing your minor, you will be
ready for better decision making in business with your quantitative
talent as a firm basis.
The minor is aimed at a mixture of students from Econometrics and
Operations Research (EOR) and students from Business Administration (BA)
with a strong quantitative interest. However, any student in the
Netherlands and abroad with an interest in applying mathematics in a
business environment should be interested in this minor. Specifically,
students from all over the world in Applied Mathematics (AM), and
Industrial Engineering (IE) are more than welcome to join.
The 30 EC programme is entirely taught in English. It consists of three
courses a case lab and a business game of 6 EC each. A course
Operational Analysis offers models and concepts to analyze operations
management problems occurring in a variety of industries. A course
Heuristic Methods focusses on practice oriented algorithm design. In a
Data Analytics course the challenges of extracting useful information
from big data to support decision making in business environments will
play a central role. The tools developed in these courses will be
applied to challenging and significant business cases in the rest of the
programme. The Case Lab will draw from a rich variety of business
settings, such as supply chain management, revenue management (e.g. in
airline industry), marketing, work force planning and health care. The
Business Game will simulate the whole process of managerial decision
making in a practical business situation, giving you a real-life
experience of applying the material studied in a business environment.
The experience offered by these case studies will be greatly magnified
by the aimed mixture of backgrounds of the participating students.
The lectures will be given by internationally renowned lecturers from
the departments of Econometrics and Operations Research and Information,
Logistics and Innovation. The foundations of Operations Analytics on
mathematical modelling, data analysis and the design and analysis of
algorithms is core business of the Operations Research group at the VU.
Next to researchers on the methodological mathematical aspects of
Operations Research, the group hosts professors who share their position
at the VU with a key position in the consultancy industry. They will
share with the students their broad experience in both the practical and
the mathematical side of OR-applications in Business Processes. The
application of advanced Operations Research techniques is one of the
most prominent pillars of the Logistics research group. The minor aligns
well with the 3 main research tracks within the Logistics research group
being (i) performance benchmarking and best practices, (ii) network
planning and redesign and (iii) supply chain coordination and incentive
alignment. As such, insights from ongoing research will be integrated in
the lectures and case discussions by lecturers in Logistics from the VU.
If you want to acquire experience outside of the university, to apply
the theory you studied in real-life, then this minor offers you the
opportunity to do an internship. The internship is 12 EC and will
replace the case oriented courses (Case Lab and the Business Game). In
general it will be at a company and will be concluded with a written
report. A few talented students may be offered the option to do a
research and teaching internship within the participating departments.
The internship always has to be approved by the coordinator of the minor
Prof. Dr. Leen Stougie.
We aim at a mixture of students of different backgrounds but we expect
every student to have completed the mathematics courses in his or her
bachelor programme, preferably with good notes. Basic knowledge of
optimization algorithms is helpful but certainly not required. If you
have the feeling that this is the minor you are looking for, the we are
looking for you and welcome you to apply.
This minor contains 5 compulsory courses. Instead of the courses
Business Game and Case Lab you may choose to do an internship. Note
that the internship has to be approved by the minor coordinator in