Zwart Awarded Prestigious Erlang Prize

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ISyE Professor Bert Zwart received the prestigious Erlang Prize during the INFORMS annual meeting in Seattle, Washington in October. The Erlang Prize is awarded every two years by the Applied Probability Society of INFORMS to honor a research scholar under the age of 36 who has contributed significantly to applied probability.

The INFORMS Committee's citation acknowledged Zwart's extensive contributions to the field: "This award recognizes Berts' outstanding contributions to several areas in the interface of applied probability, computer science, and communication networks.

His most notable contributions were to develop large-buffer asymptotics in communication networks and delay asymptotics for scheduling disciplines. In analyzing large-buffer asymptotics, Bert and his coauthors developed new tools for obtaining the exact large-buffer asymptotics for fluid queues fed by a superposition of on-off sources with heavy-tailed activity periods, solving some key open problems in this area. In analyzing delay asymptotics, Bert and his coauthors broke new ground to obtain delay asymptotics for queues with heavy tailed job size distributions; such distributions are common in a variety of contexts such as batch jobs, Web documents, FTP file transfers, supercomputing jobs and Internet flow durations.

Bert has made important contributions through a broad array of other problems, ranging from measure-valued fluid limits for processor sharing queues with customer abandonment, to corrected diffusion approximations for staffing large call centers, to analysis of TCP protocols. Bert's work has been both broad and deep.*

Zwart has been an associate professor at ISyE since 2006. He graduated in 1997 with an M.A. degree in Econometrics at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands. He carried out his Ph.D research at Eindhoven University of Technology and the Center for Mathematics and Computer Science. For his Ph.D thesis "Queueing Systems with Heavy Tails," he received the Applied Probability Trust award (2001), the ASML prize for best Ph.D thesis in Einhoven in 2002, and the Gijs de Leve prize for best Ph.D thesis in Operations research (in the Netherlands, from 2000-2002).

In the academic year 2001-2002, he spent a postdoctoral fellowship at INRIA, Rocquencourt, France. From 2002-2006, Zwart was on the faculty of the math and CS department of Eindhoven University of Technology as VENI fellow and assistant professor. He serves on the editorial boards of several international journals.

Zwart is currently on leave from Georgia Tech working at the Center for Mathematics and Computer Science (CWI) in Amsterdam. He is the second member of ISyE's faculty to receive this award. ISyE Professor Jim Dai was awarded the Erlang Prize in 1998.

Zwart's now joins an impressive list of other prominent researchers who have received this honor. They include:
(2006) Kavita Ramanan, Carnegie Mellon University
(2004) David Gamarnik, IBM
(2002) Steven Kou, Columbia University
(2000) Balaji Prabharkar, Stanford University and David Tse, University of California
(1998) Xiuli Chao, New Jersey Institute of Technology (*) and Jim Dai, Georgia Institute of Technology
(1996) Dimitris J. Bertsimas, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Paul Glasserman, Columbia University
(1994) Lawrence M. Wein, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (*)

* This is where each recipient was stationed at the time of the award.


  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created By: Barbara Christopher
  • Created: 10/28/2008
  • Modified By: Fletcher Moore
  • Modified: 10/07/2016

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