Complex Systems Colloquium: Model-Based Systems Engineering

Leon F. McGinnis, Professor Emeritus, Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Georgia Tech.

Thursday, February 28, 2013, 12:00-1:00pm

Jackson Conference Room

Hosted by Professor Laura Ray; free and open to the Thayer community; refreshments will be served.


There is a great deal of interest today in "Complex Systems" and much research effort spread across a number of disciplines. Not only are complex systems interesting from a scientific perspective, understanding them is critical for contemporary society. This talk will be about systems modeling, seen from an engineering perspective, and motivated by discrete event logistics systems, such as warehouses, robotic cells, factories, supply chains, hospitals, call centers, and any system which consumes discrete inputs, uses discrete resources to perform discrete activities, and produces discrete outputs. Some of these may well qualify as "complex systems" and some may be simply "complicated." I'll try to answer three questions: (1) Why do we want to model these systems; (2) Why are these systems difficult to model; and (3) What is the state of the art in modeling these systems?

About the Speaker

Leon F. McGinnis is Professor Emeritus in the Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at Georgia Tech. He is internationally known for his leadership in the material handling research community and his research in the area of discrete event logistics systems. A frequent speaker at international conferences, he has received several awards from professional societies for his innovative research, including the David F. Baker Award from IIE, the Reed-Apple Award from the Material Handling Education Foundation, and the Material Handling Innovation Pioneer award from Material Handling Management Magazine. He is author or editor of eight books, one journal special issue, and more than 110 technical publications. At Georgia Tech, Professor McGinnis has held leadership positions in a number of industry-focused centers and multi-disciplinary programs, including the Material Handling Research Center, the Computer Integrated Manufacturing Systems Program, the Manufacturing Research Center, the Sustainable Design and Manufacturing Program, the Tennenbaum Institute for Enterprise Transformation, and the Model-Based Systems Engineering Research Center. His current research explores the adaptation of Model Driven Architecture and formal systems modeling methods to achieve model based engineering of discrete event logistics systems. Professor McGinnis is a Fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineering.

For more information, contact Kathleen Crowe at 603-646-3557 or