The first International Conference on Operational Research for Development (ICORD) was held in at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad, India in December 1992. The Conference fulfilled it aim of providing a forum: for intensive discussion and exchange of experiences of various researchers dealing with OR in developing countries and OR for development; and for effective interaction and discussion among a critical mass of participantsfrom the developing countries.
Two plenary sessions, chaired by Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead and by Prof. Aris Sissouras, were devoted to a discussion of a draft IFORS policy paper by Prof. Roberto Galvao. After extensive debate the following resolution known as the The Ahmedabad Declaration was adopted unanimously by the conference.
The main propositions of the Declaration can be summarized as follows (Rosenhead, 1998):
1. Methods for ill-structured problems, such as ‘soft’ problem structuring methods, should be further developed, disseminated, and included in postgraduate courses which train students from developing countries;
2. OR departments in developed countries should run courses which provide an understanding of development issues and their relevance for OR practice;
3. More strong academic centres of OR are needed in the Third World; twinning of institutions in the developed and less-developed worlds, including funded collaborative research, should be expanded;
4. IFORS should ensure that successor conferences to ICORD ’92 should be held at regular intervals;
5. IFORS should use its international standing to raise funds to use as seed money for collaborative research projects (as above) and for supporting the development of OR in developing countries;
6. IFORS should explore innovative ways of making books and journals available at reduced price to operational researchers in developing countries;
7. IFORS should be responsive to the views of those involved with OR for development; the strengthening of the OR for Development Newsletter is vital to maintain contact between ICORD conferences.