Rochester, Minnesota




Mustafa Y. Sir, Ph.D., has expertise in developing algorithmic and computational methods for large-scale optimization problems needed to effectively (and practically) determine good (if not optimal) solutions.

Dr. Sir's research has focused on complex scheduling and treatment planning problems arising in health care operations and radiation therapy. In addition, he has developed simulation-based optimization algorithms for streamlining patient flow by optimizing resource levels used at different stages of the care delivery process, from admission through discharge. Dr. Sir is also interested in developing decision support systems to optimally manage workload in dynamically changing health care settings.

Focus areas

  • Developing a data-driven emergency department (ED) staffing and shift design model that is patient-centered (based on the needs of the patients) and coordinated across multiple disciplines (that is, involving ED physicians, nurses and physician assistants)
  • Developing accurate prediction models for surgical durations and incorporating them into surgical scheduling optimization algorithms to improve utilization of surgical resources such as surgical team and operating rooms, thereby reducing delays in patient access to these surgical services
  • Developing mathematical models and decision support systems to optimally assign tasks in dynamically changing health care settings (for example, an inpatient nursing unit)

Significance to patient care

Systems engineering methodologies can help identify and eliminate inefficiencies in care delivery processes, optimize appointment schedules, and determine optimal capacity and staffing decisions. This will result in reduced patient waiting times, timely access to various specialties and reduced overall length of stay.

Professional highlights

  • Junior Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award, College of Engineering, University of Missouri, 2012
  • MU Outstanding Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering Teaching Award, voted by graduating class, University of Missouri, 2011, 2012
  • Katta Murty Prize for Best Research Paper on Optimization, University of Michigan, 2008


See my publications


Academic Rank

  1. Assistant Professor of Health Care Systems Engineering


  1. MSE - Electrical Engineering - Systems University of Michigan
  2. Ph.D. - Industrial and Operations Engineering Dissertation title: Optimization of radiotherapy, considering uncertainties caused by daily setup procedures and organ motion. Advisors: Marina A. Epelman and Stephen M. Pollock. University of Michigan
  3. MSE - Industrial and Operations Engineering University of Michigan
  4. BSE - Industrial and Operations Engineering, Magna cum Laude University of Michigan
  5. BSE - Industrial Engineering University of Pittsburgh

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