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Disaster relief routing: Integrating research and practice

  • de la Torre, Luis E.
  • Dolinskaya, Irina S.
  • Smilowitz, Karen R.
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    Disaster relief presents many unique logistics challenges, with problems including damaged transportation infrastructure, limited communication, and coordination of multiple agents. Central to disaster relief logistics is the distribution of life-saving commodities to beneficiaries. Operations research models have potential to help relief agencies save lives and money, maintain standards of humanitarianism and fairness and maximize the use of limited resources amid post-disaster chaos. Through interviews with aid organizations, reviews of their publications, and a literature review of operations research models in transportation of relief goods, this paper provides an analysis of the use of such models from the perspective of both practitioners and academics. With the complexity of disaster relief distribution and the relatively small number of journal articles written on it, this is an area with potential for helping relief organizations and for tremendous growth in operations research.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Socio-Economic Planning Sciences.

    Volume (Year): 46 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 88-97

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:soceps:v:46:y:2012:i:1:p:88-97
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    1. Tzeng, Gwo-Hshiung & Cheng, Hsin-Jung & Huang, Tsung Dow, 2007. "Multi-objective optimal planning for designing relief delivery systems," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(6), pages 673-686, November.
    2. Doerner, Karl & Focke, Axel & Gutjahr, Walter J., 2007. "Multicriteria tour planning for mobile healthcare facilities in a developing country," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 179(3), pages 1078-1096, June.
    3. Mete, Huseyin Onur & Zabinsky, Zelda B., 2010. "Stochastic optimization of medical supply location and distribution in disaster management," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 76-84, July.
    4. Yi, Wei & Ozdamar, Linet, 2007. "A dynamic logistics coordination model for evacuation and support in disaster response activities," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 179(3), pages 1177-1193, June.
    5. Rawls, Carmen G. & Turnquist, Mark A., 2010. "Pre-positioning of emergency supplies for disaster response," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 521-534, May.
    6. Altay, Nezih & Green III, Walter G., 2006. "OR/MS research in disaster operations management," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 175(1), pages 475-493, November.
    7. Lin, Yen-Hung & Batta, Rajan & Rogerson, Peter A. & Blatt, Alan & Flanigan, Marie, 2011. "A logistics model for emergency supply of critical items in the aftermath of a disaster," Socio-Economic Planning Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 45(4), pages 132-145, December.
    8. Yi, Wei & Kumar, Arun, 2007. "Ant colony optimization for disaster relief operations," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(6), pages 660-672, November.
    9. Haghani, Ali & Oh, Sei-Chang, 1996. "Formulation and solution of a multi-commodity, multi-modal network flow model for disaster relief operations," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 231-250, May.
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