Operations research (OR) is a set of mathematical and computational tools for making decisions about complex systems.
Operations Research Stack Exchange is for OR professionals, educators, practitioners, and students. If your question is about:
- mathematical optimization models or algorithms (linear programming, nonlinear/integer/stochastic programming, and so on)
- Markov chains or other types of stochastic processes
- discrete-event or Monte Carlo simulation
- OR applications such as supply chain management, energy, or health care
then you're in the right place.
Anyone can ask a question, regardless of skills and experience. Here are some resources to help you make your question as good as possible, and most likely to get good answers:
- How do I ask a good question?
- What types of questions should I avoid asking?
- How do I use MathJax on this site?
- What is a minimal, reproducible example (reprex), and how do I write one?
- Can I ask a homework question on OR.SE?
- How should I ask for help with my OR model?
Similarly, anyone can answer a question. Our community aims to create a lasting record of great answers to questions. Providing references to peer-reviewed literature or links to online resources is warmly welcomed. You can also incorporate the work of others under fair use doctrine and Stack Exchange's policies. In general, you must attribute any text, images, or other material that is not originally yours.
Programming questions are welcome here if they require OR knowledge or involve OR-specific software. If your question is more general, or if it would likely be useful to non-OR programmers, it might be better asked on Stack Overflow.
OR is an interdisciplinary field, and as such, certain questions might be on-topic both on OR.SE and on other Stack Exchange sites:
- Mathematics: Mathematics Stack Exchange or MathOverflow
- Theoretical analysis of algorithms: Computer Science or Theoretical Computer Science
- Statistics, probability, and machine learning: CrossValidated
- Data science: Data Science
- Artificial intelligence: Artificial Intelligence
- Economics: Economics
In cases such as these, you can use your own best judgment about which site to ask on, based on your own preference and on the type of answer you are hoping to receive. If the OR.SE community feels your question is off-topic, we'll let you know in the comments and try to help you bring it into scope. If your question is close-voted, we'll try to suggest another home for your question and we hope you'll be back with OR-related questions in the near future. Note that cross-posting on multiple SE sites is generally discouraged.