Analytics Expert Visits Department of Industrial Engineering

Jack Kloeber
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Jack Kloeber

Jack Kloeber, principal of Kromite LLC, visited the Department of Industrial Engineering where he met with faculty and spoke to two industrial engineering classes, Decision Models and Introduction to Operations Research.

His topic, "Good Growth through Advanced Analytics," covered recent research he has conducted for Syngenta, a leading agriculture company, guiding them to a culture of using advanced analytics for decision making. Syngenta's soybean breeding is critical to their Good Growth Initiative, which focuses on fighting hunger and increasing global farmer productivity. Syngenta soybeans also play a leadership role in its overall corporate strategy by developing and implementing a new R&D model, enabling creation of efficient and effective breeding strategies to compete in a worldwide soybean agriculture market. Key to this new strategy was the addition of advanced analytics to the "Art of Breeding" to detect opportunities and to optimize the breeding processes. The discrete event and Monte Carlo simulation models helped to codify the corporate best  practices and allowed for stochastic optimization to create the best soybean breeding plans and strategically aligned (and affordable) research efforts.

This research conducted by Syngenta and Kloeber was recently awarded the prestigious Franz Edelman Award by the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS at the annual Conference on Business Analytics and Operations in April 2015.

The Edelman Award attests to the contributions of operations research and analytics in both the profit and non-profit sectors. Since its inception cumulative benefits from Edelman finalist projects has topped the $210 billion mark. Edelman finalist teams have improved organizational efficiency, increased profits, brought better products to consumers, helped foster peace negotiations, and saved lives. The purpose of the Franz Edelman competition is to bring forward, recognize and reward outstanding examples of operations research, management science and advanced analytics in practice in the world, with $15,000 in awards. First prize is accompanied by a $10,000 honorarium.

Kloeber is a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel with experience in R&D portfolio management, decision analysis, modeling and simulation, technology selection, and strategy development. He taught mathematics at West Point, and graduate level decision analysis, systems simulation, and technology selection at the Air Force Institute of Technology. After retiring from the US Army, Kloeber became head of Portfolio Management for Bristol-Myers Squibb and later at Johnson & Johnson Pharma Services where he coordinated the portfolio management efforts across multiple operating companies. His work has supported decisions for various DoE superfund sites, many technology organizations within the Department of Defense, and pharmaceutical and agriculture R&D organizations. Jack joined Kromite LLC as partner in 2007 and has been the principal since 2012.

He received his Ph.D. in economic decision analysis from Georgia Institute of Technology and master's degree in industrial engineering from Lehigh University. He is a founding fellow and current president of the Society of Decision Professionals, a 20 year member of the Decisions Analysis Society, and a 25-year member of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).

Contacts

Tamara Ellenbecker, media specialist
Tamara Ellenbecker
479-575-3157, tellebe@uark.edu

Camilla Shumaker, director of communications
College of Engineering
479-575-5697, camillas@uark.edu

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