A Distributionally Robust Analysis of the Program Evaluation and Review Technique

Traditionally, stochastic project planning problems are modeled using the Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT). PERT is an attractive technique that is commonly used in practice as it requires specification of only a few characteristics of the activities’ duration. Moreover, its computational burden is extremely low. Over the years, four main disadvantages of PERT have … Read more

Maximizing a class of utility functions over the vertices of a polytope

Given a polytope X, a monotone concave univariate function g, and two vectors c and d, we study the discrete optimization problem of finding a vertex of X that maximizes the utility function c’x + g(d’x). This problem has numerous applications in combinatorial optimization with a probabilistic objective, including estimation of project duration with stochastic … Read more

On the Complexity of Non-Overlapping Multivariate Marginal Bounds for Probabilistic Combinatorial Optimization Problems

Given a combinatorial optimization problem with an arbitrary partition of the set of random objective coefficients, we evaluate the tightest possible bound on the expected optimal value for joint distributions consistent with the given multivariate marginals of the subsets in the partition. For univariate marginals, this bound was first proposed by Meilijson and Nadas (Journal … Read more