Recent Work in Multi-Echelon Inventory Theory

by E. P. Durbin, Richard D. Wollmer

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Three pioneering papers not yet generally available are summarized and discussed. The first, by W.I. Zangwill of the University of California, Berkeley, presents a very general multi-echelon, multi-period, multi-product production and inventory model in which demand is known precisely. The second, by S.A. Bessler and A.F. Veinott, Jr., of Stanford University, models a warehousing and inventory problem in a classical sense and will undoubtedly underlie future work in multi-echelon inventory models. The third, by C.C. Sherbrooke of The RAND Corporation, is a repair shop or job shop model which assumes a particular demand distribution that provides analytic tractability but is still fairly general.

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