Michael Florian

January 28, 1939

Brief Biography

Florian Fellow Portait

Michael Florian is best known for his contributions to the solving of problems pertaining to the transportation of people and goods. Born in Romania, he arrived in Canada at the age of 18 to attend McGill University.  He received his PhD in operations research and systems analysis from Columbia University prior to joining the Department of Computer Science and Operations Research at the University of Montreal in 1969. He has been named Professor Emeritus in 2004.

 In 1973 Florian founded the Center for Transportation Research at Montreal and united its research efforts with the other leading transportation research centers in Quebec. He served as its Director until 1979. In 1976, he established INRO, a private organization dedicated to ensuring the impact of leading transportation research discoveries. INRO develops and markets transportation planning software that is sued in more than 85 countries of the world.

In 1977, Florian published, in Transportation Science,an article on a traffic equilibrium model of travel by car and public transit modes. In it, he developed a model that marked a clear distinction between the flow of vehicles and flow of transit passengers and the means of modeling the interaction that occurs between vehicles. This was an early contribution to the study of integrated multi-mode models of demand, supply, and performance in transportation networks.  In the 1980s and 1990s as well as later, Florian continued to created models of road and transit networks for passenger and freight flows.

He has published more than 150 articles published in scientific journals and conference proceedings on transportation research and operations research. With Donald W. Hearn, he co-authored  a chapter on “Network Equilibrium” in the Handbook of Operations Research on Networks. He authored and co-authored similar chapters in other handbooks, such as Handbook of Transportation Science.

Since 1968 he has been active as an editor and has served in an editorial capacity for journals in operations research, transportation, and regional science.

Florian is the fourth-ever individual to receive the Robert Herman Lifetime Achievement Award in Transportation Science from the Transportation Science and Logistical Section of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS). He was named a Fellow of INFORMS in 2006.

Other Biographies

Wikipedia Entry (Français) for Michael Florian


McGill University, B.Eng. 1962

Columbia University, M.Sc. 1966, PhD 1969 (Mathematics Genealogy)


Academic Affiliations
Non-Academic Affiliations
  • INRO

Key Interests in OR/MS

Application Areas

Awards and Honors

Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada 1990

Robert Herman Lifetime Achievement Award 1998

Dr.Lith., Honoris Causa, Linkoping University, Faculty of Engineering 2000

Honorary Professor, East China University of Technology 2002

Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences Fellow 2006

Lionel-Boulet Quebec Science Prize, 2010

Selected Publications

Florian M. & Klein M. (1971) Deterministic production planning with concave costs and capacity constraints. Management Science, 18(1): 12-20.
Florian M. (1977) A traffic equilibrium model of travel by car and public transit modes. Transportation Science, 11(2): 166-179.

McMahon G. & Florian M. (1975) On scheduling with ready times and due dates to minimize maximum lateness, Operations Research 23(3) 475-482.

Florian M., Lenstra J. K., & Rinnooy Kan A. H. G. (1980) Deterministic production planning: algorithms and complexity. Management Science, 26(7): 669-679.

Florian M. & Spiess S. (1989) Optimal strategies: a new assignment model for transit networks. Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, 23(2): 83-102.

Crainic T. G., Florian M., & Guelat J. (1990) A multimode multiproduct network assignment model for strategic planning of freight flows. Transportation science, 24(1): 25-39.

Florian M. & Hearn D. W. (1995) Network equilibrium models and algorithms. O'Ball, ed. in Handbooks in Operations Research and Management Science, Volume 8, 485-550. Elsevier: New York.

Cepeda, M., Cominetti, R., & Florian, M. (2006), “A Frequency-based Assignment Model for Congested Transit Networks with Strict Capacity Constraints: Characterization and Computation of Equilibria”, Transportation Research B 40:  437-459.

Florian, M., Mahut, M., Tremblay, N., (2008), “Application of a Simulation-Based Dynamic Traffic Assignment Model”, European Journal of Operational Research 189,: 1381-1392.