A “Moneyball” Approach

A “Moneyball” Approach

Syngenta was recently recognized for achievement in operations research and management sciences as winner of the 2015 Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS) Franz Edelman Award. Joseph Byrum led the charge in soybean research that earned this recognition.

“People typically talk about the art of plant breeding,” says Joseph Byrum, head of soybean seeds product development. “We’re interested in the science.”

The Syngenta soybean breeding team partnered with Kromite to use advanced mathematics and analytic tools to make informed decisions during the soybean breeding process. Essentially, the math uses sophisticated analytics to improve and shorten the process of selecting genetics for new varieties. This approach allows for quantitative results throughout the pipeline.

“[This is] transformational to this industry,” says Chris Tutino, senior communications manager at Syngenta.

Syngenta has implemented this technique in all of its soybean research facilities and will add it to corn, cotton and other crops. This technique is what gained Syngenta’s induction into the Edelman Academy by becoming a finalist for their 2015 INFORMS Franz Edelman Award.

In its 44th year, the Franz Edelman Award recognizes the application of advanced analytics to benefit business and humanitarian efforts. Syngenta was among the top six finalists for the award. Other finalists include IBM for “Predictive Cloud Computing with Big Data: Professional Golf and Tennis Forecasting;” Ingram Micro for “End-to-End Business Analytics and Optimization in Ingram Micro’s Two-Tier Distribution Business;” LMI/Defense Logistics Agency for “Peak and Next Gen: Effective Inventory Control for Items with Infrequent or Frequent, Highly Variable Demand;” Saudi Arabia Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs for “A Decision Support System for Hajj Crowd Management;” and the US Army and Sandia National Laboratories for “Maximizing the Army’s Future Contribution to Global Security Using the Capability Portfolio Analysis Tool.”

Monday, April 13, Syngenta was named the winner of the 2015 INFORMS Franz Edelman during the awards reception in California.

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