Congratulations to the winner of the Inaugural Recipient of the Impactful Research Award: Dr. Michel Bierlaire, for pioneering accessible and credible open-source travel analysis statistical software.
Dr. Bierlaire’s open-source package Biogeme has a huge impact on the travel analysis field both directly and indirectly. Originally released in 2000 in its C++ form, it used Excel spreadsheets to create specificaitons and was on the forfront of two revolutions: open source software, and accessible advanced choice modeling specifications beyond multi-nomial and nested logit models. This package was almost single-handedly responsible for putting important statistical formulations in the hands of public agencies, industry professionals and researchers alike. Dr. Bierlaire has provided continuous updates to the tool including refactoring the code into a Python package to make the source code and its execution even more accessible. Beyond contributing the tool to the community, Dr. Bierlaire remains accessible to those of us who have needed help trouble-shooting its appropriate use.
The 2020 Impactful Research Award Committee was:
The Impactful Research Award shall be given to an individual or team of researchers for a research project that has had the most [relatively recent] impact on bettering the travel analysis field for the public good.
This award shall be considered no less than three years from the publication of the specified work and should have been introduced within the past two decades.
Nominees will be considered by a three-person award committee and forwarded to the Zephyr Board for approval. Awards are made at the TRB Annual Meeting.