The conference was opened by Tamara Keszey, Vice-Rector for Research at Corvinus University and Dries Goossens (Ghent University), coordinator of the EURO working group on OR in Sports. The plenary speakers were Ian McHale (University of Liverpool), László Toka (BME) and Ignacio Palacios-Huerta (London School of Economics), who talked about the relationship between age and sport performance, the optimal decisions of football teams based on machine learning and the economic relevance of sport data.
At the event, 50 presentations were featured in two parallel sessions, three of which were given by lecturers from our university and three by our students. The common link between the presentations was sport and quantitative analysis, and almost all of them addressed issues of practical relevance to sports managers. This was demonstrated by the presence among the prestigious speakers of experts such as Julien Guyon (École des Ponts ParisTech), who proposed the tournament format introduced in the 2018 World Cup, or Mario Guajardo (NHH Norwegian School of Economics), who defined the optimal order of matches currently used in the qualifying rounds of the World Cup in South America. The keynote speaker, Dries Goossens, has been in charge of the scheduling of the Belgian football championship for many years with his research team.
Around three quarters of the 76 registered participants came from academia, while a quarter came from the business world, mainly betting agencies and sports analytics companies. In their experience, this is one of the best forums to learn about recent research findings and to explore trends in the development of predictive models used by companies.
The biennial event was organised by EURO (Association of European Operational Research Societies) with the support of its working group on OR in Sports and a four-member committee including László Csató (Chairperson; Institute of Operations and Decision Sciences; SZTAKI), Sándor Bozóki( Institute of Operations and Decision Sciences; SZTAKI), Zsombor Szádoczki (Institute of Operations and Decision Sciences; SZTAKI) and Dóra Gréta Petróczy (Institute of Finance, Accounting and Business Law; KRTK KTI), assisted by the Institute of Operations and Decision Sciences.
The abstracts of the presentations are available in the book of abstracts.
In keeping with the tradition of the event, the conference proceedings including 21 papers was also produced.