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Pascal Van Hentenryck

Seth Bonder Collegiate Professor of Engineering, University of Michigan

Pascal Van Hentenryck is the Seth Bonder Collegiate Professor at the University of Michigan. He is professor of Industrial and Operations Engineering, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, and Core Faculty in the Michigan Institute for Data Science (MIDAS). Prior to that, he led the optimization research group (about 70 people) at National ICT Australia (NICTA) and was a professor of Computer Science at Brown University for about 20 years.

Van Hentenryck is the author of five books, all published by the MIT Press, and over 230 scientific publications. He is the recipient of an NSF Young Investigator award in 1993, the 2002 INFORMS Computing Society (ICS) prize, the 2006 ACP award, doctor honoris causa degrees from the University of Louvain in 2008 and from the University of Nantes in 2011. He is a fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), the recipient of the Philip J. Bray Award for Teaching Excellence at Brown University and a 2013 IFORS distinguished lecturer. He was a Ulam fellow at the Center of Nonlinear Studies at Los Alamos in 2011 and 2012 and is a senior visiting fellow at the Institute of Advanced Studies in Bologna. Van Hentenryck had award-winning papers at CP’03, CP’04, ASE’04, IJCAI’07, SEDE’09, PAIS’14, and AAAI’15, and received a Test of Time (20 years) Award from the association of logic programming. He gave plenary or semi-plenary talks at the SIAM Optimization Conference, the International Symposium on Mathematical Programming, the INFORMS Annual Conference, the Joint International Conference on Artificial Intelligence, and the International Conference in Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence among others.

Van Hentenryck’s current research is in prescriptive analytics at the intersection of data science and optimisation, with applications to energy systems (electrical and gas networks), disaster management, transportation and logistics, social science, and marketing. Most of these applications require predictive models and optimisation over complex infrastructures, natural phenomena, and human behaviour. Traditionally, his research focused on optimisation and the design and implementation of innovative optimisation systems. Van Hentenryck is the main designer and implementor of the CHIP programming system (now a Cosytec product), the foundation of all modern constraint programming systems, the Numerica system, the optimisation programming language OPL (now an IBM Product), and the programming language Comet (with Laurent Michel). These systems are described in MIT Press books and have been licensed to industry. His research on disaster planning and response has also been deployed to help federal agencies in the United States to mitigate the effects of hurricanes on coastal areas and will be used in Australia to assist in evacuation planning. Van Hentenryck has also worked on computational biology, numerical analysis, and programming languages, publishing in premier journals in these areas.


  • 2015–present
    Seth Bonder Collegiate Professor of Engineering, University of Michigan
  • 2012–2015
    Optimization Research Group Leader, NICTA
  • 1990–2012
    Professor, Brown University