George Nicholson Student Paper Competition - Application Process

The George Nicholson Committee competition is held each year to identify and honor outstanding papers in the field of operations research and the management sciences written by a student.

The following conditions must be satisfied for eligibility:

  • The entrant must have been a student on or after June 1 of the previous year under consideration;
  • The paper must present original research results (a summary of multiple papers is not eligible);
  • The research must have been conducted while the entrant was a student;
  • One or more advisors may appear as co-authors of a paper, but the student's contributions must make up the majority of the paper. The advisor (or nominator) must explicitly comment upon and specify in a letter the percentage of contribution of the student;
    • in defining the problem and initiating the research that resulted in the paper;
    • in conducting the research itself that resulted in the paper;
    • in writing the paper.
  • An entrant can be a (co-)author in at most one paper submitted to the competition. More than one entrant per paper is allowed as long as they are eligible;
  • The paper must not have won a prize (1st-2nd) in a previous Nicholson Competition;

Paper formatting requirements:

  • The paper must use double spacing, 11 pt (or larger) font, and 1 inch (or larger) margins (left, right, top and bottom)
  • The paper must be of standard letter size (A4 will not be accepted)
  • The entire paper (including title, abstract, authors names and affiliations, bibliography, appendices, figures, etc.) must not exceed 25 pages. Papers must be self-contained. In particular, references to ‘extended versions’ are not encouraged and no credit will be given in the judging process for results that rely on such references. Apart from pages containing the bibliography, each page should contain no more than 30 lines of text.

Prizes will be awarded and finalists will be invited to present their papers at the INFORMS Annual Meeting.

First, and second prize winners, and honorable mentions will be invited to submit their papers to Operations Research for an expedited review that extends the review process undertaken as part of the competition. 

Submission Procedures for 2021:

All application materials must be submitted online. 

Click here to submit your application 

Submission Deadline: June 2, 2021

A complete entry consists of:

A single electronic PDF file with the following two components (merged) - 

1) a self-contained paper in the specified format (papers not satisfying the format will not be accepted);

2) a letter (the required attachment) signed by both a faculty advisor and the entrant attesting that the seven eligibility conditions have been satisfied by the entrant and the paper.

Note that the faculty advisor must explicitly comment upon and specify the percentage of contribution of the student in a. defining the problem and initiating the research that resulted in the paper; b. in conducting the research itself that resulted in the paper; c. in writing the paper. 

The student must also state whether or not this paper (or its lengthened/shortened form) has ever been submitted for publication, is currently under review or has been published. If so, the journal(s) and the outcome of the review or the current review stage(s) should be provided. 

All entries must be submitted by June 2, 2021 (11:59 pm Eastern time).

2021 Committee Co-Chairs:

Fatma Kilinc-Karzan
Carnegie Mellon University

Kuang Xu
Stanford University