2014 Quarter 3

REPORT FROM THE ASSOCIATION FOR CONSTRAINT PROGRAMMING

This is a short summary of activities within the ACP during the months July-September 2014.

The 2014 ACP Executive Committee comprises the following people, in alphabetical order:

  • Yves Deville
  • Pierre Flener - Conference Coordinator
  • Willem-Jan van Hoeve - Secretary
  • Barry O'Sullivan (ex-officio, non-voting)
  • Thomas Schiex - Treasurer
  • Helmut Simonis - President
  • Guido Tack
  • Roland Yap

The ACP Executive Committee welcomes feedback and suggestions from the ACP community. We encourage you to engage with the ACP-EC to help design new initiatives that promote constraint programming.

  • ACP.1: Executive Committee Elections
  • ACP.2: CP 2014
  • ACP.3: Distinguished Service Award
  • ACP.4: Doctoral Research Award
  • ACP.5: General Assembly 2014
  • ACP.6: Strategic Committee
  • ACP.7: CP 2015
  • ACP.8: Doctoral Program at CP Conferences
  • ACP.9: Summer School 2015: Call for Proposals

ACP.1. Executive Committee Elections

The Executive Committee Elections of 2014 have been held from August 1 to September 1. The newly elected EC members are confirmed by the Election Committee as follows (in alphabetical order): Alan Frisch, Christophe Lecoutre, Laurent Michel, and Nina Narodytska. Their 4-year term starts January 1, 2015. Details about the elections can be found here.

On behalf of the ACP, the Executive Committee would like to congratulate those elected, and thank all candidates who took part in the election.

ACP.2. CP 2014

The 20th International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming, CP 2014, was held in Lyon (France), September 8-12. The conference included

  • five workshops,
  • the doctoral program,
  • four tutorials,
  • four invited talks, the slides of which can be downloaded from here,
  • a 20 Years of CP anniversary celebration,
  • and of course the conference program with accepted papers in the technical track, the application track, and the journal paper presentation track.

The conference website now includes pictures taken by Helmut Simonis and Lars Kotthoff. The EC wishes to thank all the chairs and organisers of CP 2014 for a very well-organised and successful conference!

Justyna Petke and Andrea Rendl share the results of a survey they ran on of the Doctoral Programme they chaired.

ACP.3. Distinguished Service Award

The ACP Distinguished Service Award of 2014 was awarded to Barry O'Sullivan of University College Cork, Ireland, "For contributions to the field of constraint programming through sustained service providing multi-faceted and tireless leadership at the national, European and broader international level, and as the longest serving ACP president."
Barry O'Sullivan was nominated by Eugene Freuder.

The Distinguished Service Award Committee consisted of Jean-Charles Regin (ACP Research Excellence Award, 2013), Yves Deville (CP Conference Co-chair, 2014), Willem-Jan van Hoeve (ACP Secretary), and Helmut Simonis (ACP President).

ACP.4. Doctoral Research Award

The ACP Doctoral Research Award of 2014 was awarded to David Bergman of Carnegie Mellon University (USA) for his dissertation New Techniques for Discrete Optimization.

An Honorable Mention was given to Yuri Malitsky of Brown University (USA) for his dissertation Instance-Specific Algorithm Configuration.

The Doctoral Research Award Committee consisted of Guido Tack, Mark Wallace, and Roland Yap.

ACP.5. General Assembly 2014

The ACP President's Report of 2014 was presented at the General Assembly of CP 2014.

ACP.6. Strategic Committee

The Final Report of the Strategic Committee was presented and discussed at the General Assembly of CP 2014. As can be seen in the report, the committee has proposed a list of suggestions, from immediate operational to longer-term strategic decisions. Some of the operational suggestion were already started by the EC, while the EC is currently preparing a shortlist among the other suggestions.

We welcome feedback from the ACP members; the report can be downloaded from the link above. If you have further suggestions or comments, please send an email to the EC: ec@a4cp.org.

ACP.7. CP 2015

The 20th International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming, CP 2015, will be held in Cork (Ireland) from August 31 to September 4. The Conference Chairs are Ken Brown and Barry O’Sullivan. The Program Chair is Gilles Pesant. The CP conference will be part of the George Boole Celebration at University College Cork, including a co-location with the International Conference on Logic Programming (ICLP).

ACP.8. Doctoral Program at CP Conferences

The EC has observed that there has been too much emphasis on competitiveness to get into the Doctoral Program (DP) at CP conferences, whereas competitiveness should be limited to needy access to budget items, so that the community can grow again by welcoming and nurturing all talent. In consequence, the EC has decided on the following directives to the DP chairs, to be applied from CP 2015 on:

"The spirit of the Doctoral Program (DP) is that every interested student whose work is within the scope of the conference should be admitted and be given a chance to present his/her work, get a mentor, and participate in the social program. However, not all DP participants need to be financially sponsored, and the ACP encourages any financial support (which is to be secured by the Conference Chairs) to be first offered to students (1) that are most in need and (2) whose work is of the highest quality. To assess the financial need (1), applicants can be asked to submit a request for funding accompanied by a letter from their supervisor. The quality level (2) may be measured by a lightweight reviewing process, where again a letter of support from the supervisor can be helpful."

ACP.9. Summer School 2015: Call for Proposals

The Association for Constraint Programming invites proposals for organizing the ACP Summer School on Constraint Programming in 2015. Since its establishment, the summer school has been a major success with feedback from student attendees being very positive.

The proposed topic of the school can be on general CP or on a specific research subject. A complete list of ACP summer schools can be found here.

Members of the CP community who are interested in organizing the 2015 Summer School should send a proposal to secretary@a4cp.org by November 30th 2014, covering the following aspects:

  1. topic of the school
  2. location
  3. dates
  4. organizers
  5. tentative list of speakers
  6. provisional budget
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