International Conferences in OR for Development (ICORD) VI, took place in the tropical surroundings of Fortaleza, Brazil during August 29-31. The series of conferences, which has run since 1992, aims to offer a space for the discussion of OR in the context of development. The rather modern city of Fortaleza with its gently curving beach made a glamorous setting for the Conference. But at second glance the problems of development were there to see – for example, poverty and pollution. The theme of the conference, as for the annual conference of the Brazilian OR Society SOBRAPO which ran alongside, was sustainable development.
The conference had 45 registered participants, and some 35 papers were presented, in addition to those of the invited speakers (see below). The majority of those attending were from the home country (repeating the pattern of previous ICORDs); but participants came from 4 continents and 16 countries. Sira Allende (Cuba), Subhash Datta (India), Dania El-Iraqi (Egypt), Isaac Mbeche (Kenya), Helen Moshkovich (USA), Jonathan Rosenhead (UK), Theo Stewart (South Africa) and Arabinda Tripathy (India) all gave invited talks. Topics ranged from how OR could improve ublic service delivery (Mbeche), through an account of how methodologies based on connectivity could help in the transformation of societies (Datta), to the use of OR tools in the Management of Cultural Heritage (El-Iraqi). Professor Jorge Giordani, Minister of Planning and Development of Venezuela and the most senior member of President Hugo Chavez’ cabinet, described the prominent role of OR’s problem structuring methods in the ongoing transformation of Venezuelan society.
Financial support for ICORD-VI was given by IFORS, UK OR Society, and EURO, as well as CNPq (Brazilian Research Council) and CAPES (Ministry of Education), for which we are most grateful.