Dear Practitioner,

Are you a professional involved in personnel scheduling and rostering? You may then be aware that the 9th International Conference on the Practice and Theory of Timetabling (PATAT) will be held in Son near Oslo during 28-31 August 2012.

Timetabling and other scheduling activities can be found almost everywhere. Making the best use of limited resources is particularly important within labour intensive sectors such as healthcare and transportation. Personnel and employee scheduling is one of the most widespread applications of scheduling and an area where it has become customary to make use of computer-based systems to build consistent and optimal schedules. However, there are still issues and challenges that create gaps between what practitioners need and the functionality of available IT systems. An important aim of PATAT is to address these issues by encouraging the developing and reporting of innovative leading edge optimization techniques.

PATAT is a forum that brings together practitioners and researchers to exchange experience and ideas. In 2012 we will organize a dedicated practical stream where vendors and practitioners alike will be able to give presentations and participate in discussions on relevant personnel scheduling issues. In addition to the important matter of sharing experiences and discussing best practices, individuals will get the opportunity to feed challenges and issues into the research arena. It is often quoted that the sources of new knowledge is fusion: bringing together people with different ideas to work on the same problem. This fusion of research and practice is an absolute central theme to PATAT's overall aims.

We are therefore requesting your involvement. Would you be willing to attend, give a presentation, demonstrate a commercial software application, lead a discussion, or merely to participate? If so please let us know before 18 June 2012 to allow us time to put the timetable together. We are particularly interested in presentations regarding:

  • Best practices
  • Experiences
  • Challenges
  • Solutions
  • Ideas

Speakers should send us a 1-2 page abstract of their topic to before 18 June for our internal review. Please visit our website at for more information about the conference and to access our registration form. Questions can also be sent directly to the organizers of PATAT 2012 using the contact form at the website.

We are looking forward to hearing from you,

The PATAT 2012 Organising Committee