Prepositioning supplies in preparation for a foreseen hurricane
Galindo Pacheco, Gina Maria
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The dissertation addresses the problem of prepositioning supplies in preparation for a foreseen hurricane. The dissertation is divided into four parts. The first part reviews the basic concepts of disasters management and briefly analyzes the main-stream related topics that have been addressed in recent Operations Research/ Management Science (OR/MS) literature. The second part extends the former one by offering a detailed discussion about the current trends and gaps of OR/MS research in the field of Disaster Operations Management (DOM). The review is an update of a previous work given by Altay and Green (2006). The goal of the review is to analyze the evolution of the gaps identified in Altay and Green (2006) and to detect new challenges in recent OR/MS research in DOM. The third part develops a mathematical model for prepositioning supplies in preparation for a hurricane, where prepositioned supplies can be affected by the occurrence of hurricanes. The objective is to improve the efficiency of the post-disaster relief effort, while minimizing the total expected logistic cost. The fourth part enhances the model presented in the third part. The enhanced model differs from the original one in that it allows making dynamic decisions in multiple time periods. The dynamic model takes into account that as hurricanes evolve, there are available periodic forecast updates that give more accurate information about hurricane's characteristics. The model uses such forecast information updates in order to strategically modify and improve the prepositioned quantities and locations. The outputs generated by the proposed model are the selection of the locations for supply storage (supply points) and the level of storage at selected points.