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Decentralized approach to optimization draws from nature: lecture

Anand Kulkarni is inspired by nature. A research fellow at the Odette School of Business, he will explain how multi-agent systems use a decentralized approach to handle complex systems in his free public lecture, “Distributed Optimization and Swarm Intelligence,” at 3 p.m. Thursday, April 17, in room 3000, Centre for Engineering Innovation.

“These agents together could be seen as a group of rational, self-interested and self-organizing learning agents,” Dr. Kulkarni says. “They compete and interact with one another to achieve the best possible local payoff, which eventually and collectively delivers the best possible global objective.”

His talk, hosted by the Cross-Border Institute and the civil engineering department’s Transportation Systems Innovation Lab, will highlight these techniques and their competitiveness in dealing with the ever-growing complexities found in transportation-related problems such as:

  • vehicle fleet management and scheduling,
  • logistics and vehicle routing,
  • sensors deployment and networks,
  • traffic control and several other associated systems.

Kulkarni is founder and chair of the Optimization and Agent Technology (OAT) Research Lab.