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Encyclopedia > Management science

Management science, or MS, is the discipline of using mathematics, and other analytical methods, to help make better business decisions. While often considered synonymous with Operations Research (OR), MS is differentiated by being generally thought to have a more practical, rather than academic, bent. Wikibooks Wikiversity has more about this subject: School of Mathematics Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Mathematics Look up Mathematics in Wiktionary, the free dictionary Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Mathematics Inter. ... Operations research, operational research, or simply OR, is the use of mathematical models, statistics and algorithms to aid in decision-making. ...


Some of the fields that are englobed within Management Science include: decision analysis, optimization, simulation, forecasting, game theory, network/transportation models, mathematical modeling, data mining, probability and statistics, resources allocation, project management as well as many others. Decision analysis (DA) is the discipline comprising the philosophy, theory, methodology, and professional practice necessary to address important decisions in a formal manner. ... In mathematics, optimization is the discipline which is concerned with finding the maxima and minima of functions, possibly subject to constraints. ... A simulation is an imitation of some real device or state of affairs. ... Prediction of future events is an ancient human wish. ... Game theory is a branch of applied mathematics that studies strategic situations where players choose different actions in an attempt to maximize their returns. ... Note: The term model is also given a formal meaning in model theory, a part of axiomatic set theory. ... Data mining, also known as knowledge-discovery in databases (KDD), is the practice of automatically searching large stores of data for patterns. ... See the separate articles on probability or the article on statistics. ...


The management scientist's mandate is to use rational, systematic, science-based techniques to inform and improve decisions of all kinds. Of course, the techniques of management science are not restricted to business applications but may be applied to military, medical, public administration, charitable groups, political groups or community groups.


MS is also concerned with so-called ”soft-operational analysis”, which concerns methods for strategic planning, strategic decision support, and Problem Structuring Methods (PSM). At this level of abstraction, mathematical modelling and simulation will not suffice. Therefore, during the past 30 years, a number of non-quantified modelling methods have been developed. These include Morphological Analysis and various forms of Influence Diagrams. Morphological analysis is a technique developed by Fritz Zwicky (1966, 1969) for exploring all the possible solutions to a multi-dimensional, non-quantified problem complex. ...


External Links

  • Strategic Decision Support using Computerised Morphological Analysis From the Swedish Morphological Society
  • Wicked Problems. Structuring Social Messes with Morphological Analysis

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INFORMS: Publications (1351 words)
Management Science, published monthly, is a scholarly journal published to scientifically address the problems, interests, and concerns of managers.
The journal promotes the science of managing private and public sector enterprises through publication of theoretical, computational, and empirical research that draws on a wide range of management subdisciplines, including accounting, business strategy, decision analysis, finance, information systems, marketing, operations management, operations research, organizational behavior, and product/technology management.
Organization Science is ranked among the top journals in management by the Social Science Citation Index in terms of impact and is widely recognized in the fields of strategy, management, and organization theory.
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