Louise Orpin


The Operational Research Society

The Operational Research Society is the professional membership body of the Operational Research (O.R.) community. O.R. is the discipline of applying appropriate, often advanced, analytical methods to help make better decisions. O.R. is concerned with assisting and advising decision-makers in a wide variety of settings including business and commerce, national and local government, and the Health Service.

O.R. is a career option for young people who enjoy studying mathematics and problem solving, but aren’t sure how they might use these skills in the workplace.  The O.R. Society aims to help teachers by providing some good examples of maths being used to help solve ‘real-world’ problems and present O.R. as an interesting and fulfilling career.


Report on the Workshop

Ever heard of the Operational Research (“OR”) Society? Nor had I. However OR Education Officer Louise Orpin soon made us aware of the career option we have been missing “the application of appropriate analytical methods to help make better decisions”.


OR helps us to understand how things work, involves using maths to make things work more efficiently and provides techniques for solving practical problems.


Before we knew it we were solving a problem IKEA must grapple with daily – how many chairs and tables to make and the most cost effective combination of each faced with limited resources. In our case we were supplied with a set of Lego bricks and instructions for how to make said chairs and tables. Using graphical representations we checked our findings. Before long we were quite appreciative of the work that goes into filling those IKEA warehouses and how OR might have an


Louise can arrange for schools, colleges and groups to be visited by members of the profession to spread the word about career options in OR and if they are half as enthusiastic as Louise you will in for a good session.

Email louise.orpin@theorsociety.com.


Ceri Griffiths