Operations Research

Operations Research involves applying advanced analytical methods to create agile, resilient and effective decisions – all traits that are essential for business survival in today’s economy.

Operations research engineering graduate at work.

Subject overview

Sometimes referred to as “the science of better”, Operations Research is a method of solving decision-making problems that involve the use of scarce or valuable resources. Its core focus is the optimisation of resources and process flows, applicable to real-world challenges such as profit maximisation, performance or yield, minimising costs, and risk management, making it an increasingly valuable field to most organisations today.

Our Department of Engineering Science boasts several experts in data-driven decision-making who actively pursue collaborative relationships with research, public and private industries worldwide. As part of the Operations Research and Computational Analytics (ORCA) group, they experiment with theory, algorithms and computational methods to develop efficient systems that are currently used in our everyday lives.

Operations Research is covered at an undergraduate level in our Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) in Engineering Science, with options to explore this specialisation’s many applications in our postgraduate programmes. Its approach is often interdisciplinary – employing techniques that include data analysis, statistics, mathematical modelling, optimisation and computing – and can therefore be potentially pursued by students with backgrounds in engineering, science, commerce and arts.

Where can Operations Research take you?

Our graduates tend to apply their research and methodological competencies to a variety of industries, including health, transport, telecommunications, broadcasting, mining and utilities. They often pursue positions as analysts or consultants, contributing to improvements in the design, performance and management of large, complex systems.  

Explore your study options in Operations Research