Upcoming Professional Course: "Systems Operations for Health and Humanitarian Logistics" (Sept 11-13)

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This September 11-13th, the Georgia Tech Health & Humanitarian Logistics Center will be offering the third course in its three-part series, “Systems Operations for Health and Humanitarian Response.” The three-course executive learning program also includes courses in Pre-Planning Strategy for Health and Humanitarian Organizations and Tactical Decision Making in Public Health and Humanitarian Response. The courses may be taken in any order, and the completion of all three courses results in a Professional Education certificate in Health & Humanitarian Logistics from GA Tech. All three courses will be offered together in a one-week format next spring (each course will be two days), from May 12-17th, 2014. Professionals who complete the September 11-13, 2013  “Systems” course will be eligible to take the Pre-Planning and Tactical Decision-Making courses in May 2014 to receive a certificate.

The Systems Operations course will focus on conceptual and modeling skills to understand and effectively manage humanitarian response from a systems perspective. Models will address system characteristics (e.g. demand dependencies) that drive system dynamics and policies to regulate performance. Course topics include methods for improving coordination and collaboration, addressing demand dependencies, and reliably measuring and evaluating system performance. The learning experience is maximized through a blended delivery format, consisting of pre and post-course online modules, mixed with face-to-face instructor-led classroom time.  

Scholarship support of these courses is made available through the generosity of The UPS Foundation, Andrea L. Laliberte, and Richard E. and Charlene O. Zalesky. For more information about the scholarships, please visit To learn more about the program or the September course and to register online, visit, or e-mail



The goal of the program is to enhance the knowledge and experience of participants in logistics and supply-chain topics related to a range of activities including preparing, responding to, and recovering from natural and man-made disasters and ongoing humanitarian crises due to war, famine, infectious diseases, and chronic health problems.  Past courses have included professionals from NGOs such as the American Red Cross, World Vision, the World Food Programme, US AID, and The Task Force for Global Health, as well as logisticians from companies such as Citrix Systems and Critical Angle Enterprises, various local and international public health and government officials, and other individuals interested in health and humanitarian logistics.

Past course participants have considered the program a truly engaging learning experience in which the lectures, worksheets, and discussions have proven very relevant to their work. Referring to one of the hands-on exercises in the class, Nancy Brockway of the American Red Cross explained how the program helped her understand how the variables impact decision-making. “After plugging variables into the models we learned, I could better understand how the logic to my thinking worked.” Participants also enjoy and benefit greatly from the interactions in the classroom. “I learned a lot from colleagues from other fields and countries. Having participants with various backgrounds and from different fields was an incentive for fruitful discussions,” said Simplice Kamdem Takoubo, from USAID/Benin. “The course provided me with new skills that I use daily in my job to increase the efficiency of U.S. Government support in achieving country goals.”


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