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edunxt smu assignments solved MB0048 - OPERATIONS RESEARCH Q1. Discuss the various stages involved in the methodology of Operations Research. Briefly explain the techniques and tools of Operations Research.

Answer: The basic characteristic of operations research is that it employs mathematical representations or models to analyze problems. This distinct approach represents an adaptation of the scientific methodology used by the physical sciences. The scientific method translates a real given problem into a mathematical representation which is solved and retransformed into the original context. The OR approach to problem solving consists of the following steps: Defining the problem, Constructing the model, Solving the model, Validating the model and
Implementing the final result.
  
Problem Definition:
The first and the most important step in the OR approach of problem solving is to define the problem. You need to ensure that the problem is identified properly because this problem statement will indicate three major aspects.


Model Construction:
Based on the problem definition, you need to identify and select the most appropriate model to represent the system.

Model Solution:
After deciding on an appropriate model you need to develop a solution for the model and interpret the solution in the context of the given problem.

Model Validation
You can test the validity of a model by comparing its performance with some past data available from the actual system.

Result Implementation
You need to apply the optimal solution obtained from the model to the system and note the improvement in the performance of the system. You need to validate this performance check under changing conditions.

OR Techniques and Tools
Linear programming: You can use linear programming to find a solution for optimising a given objective. The objective may be to maximise profit or to minimise cost.

Inventory control methods: The production, purchasing and material managers are always confronted with questions, such as when to buy, how much to buy and how much to keep in stock. The inventory model aims at optimising these inventory levels.

Goal programming: In linear programming, you take a single objective function and consider all other factors as constraints. However, in real life there may be number of important objective functions. 

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