Nicholas Ashford, professor of technology and policy and director of the Technology and Law Program, has been named chair-elect of the American Association for the Advancement of Science section on the societal impacts of science and technology.
Ashford is a faculty associate of both the Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development in the School of Engineering, and the Institute for Work and Employment Research in the Sloan School of Management. He serves as an advisor to the United Nations Environment Programme, and serves as co-chair of the US-Greece Council for the Initiative on Technology Cooperation with the Balkans. His research interests include government policies for encouraging both technological innovation and improvements in health, safety and environmental quality; low-level exposure to chemicals; sustainability, trade and environment, and environmental justice.
Professor Amedeo Odoni received the Robert Herman Lifetime Achievement Award in Transportation Science from INFORMS, the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.
Odoni's award is given to one who "has made fundamental and sustained contributions to transportation science, and has influenced the field through his or her writings, teaching, service and nurturing of younger professionals." Odoni (S.B. 1965, S.M., Ph.D., all in electrical engineering) is the T. Wilson Boeing Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and professor of civil and environmental engineering (CEE). His research interests include applications of operations research in air transportation, air traffic control and urban systems. His interests include network location theory, queueing theory, routing problems, and probabilistic combinatorial optimization problems.
Also within INFORMS' Transportation Science Section, CEE graduate Joan Walker (S.M. 1994, Ph.D. 2001) won first prize for her dissertation "Extended Discrete Models: Integrated Framework, Flexible Error Structures, and Latent Variables." Andrew Armacost (S.M. 1995, Ph.D. 2000) and Jon Bottom (S.B. and S.M. 1976, Ph.D. 2000) won honorable mentions in that competition. Armacost also won first prize in the George B. Dantzig Dissertation Competition, which honors the best dissertation in any area of operations research and the management sciences, for "Composite Variable Formulation for Express Shipment Service Network Design." And Arnold Barnett, the George Eastman Professor of Management Science at MIT's Sloan School of Management, won the Expository Writing Award. In 2000, that award went to Institute Professor John Little.
Thomas Eagar, the Thomas Lord Professor of Materials Engineering and Engineering Systems in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Engineering Systems Division, presented the General Electric Distinguished Lecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Dec. 6. The topic of his lecture was "Advanced Materials: Steel to Buckyballs--So Where Do We Go From Here? Or Should You Believe What You Read in the News?"
The Northeast Region of the US Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) honored the Gender Equity Project based at MIT on Dec. 12 when regional director James R. Turner Jr. presented an OFCCP regional award for "exemplary public interest contribution" to Nancy Hopkins, the Amgen Professor of Biology, for her role in an influential study of gender discrimination in the scientific disciplines, particularly in academia.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on December 19, 2001.