UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Application of linear programming to forest products planning Sitter, Robert Moris


The managements of integrated forest products firms in British Columbia and elsewhere must make many involved decisions in order to effectively plan the intermediate-range (one year) operations of their firms. The production systems of the forest industry involve complex allocations of many resources among competing activities. In addition, interdependencies between processes exist and frequently products are transferred between divisions. This thesis explains and illustrates how linear programming may be used to assist managements of integrated forest products firms in their planning activities. In particular, the linear programming technique is used to find suggested optimal operating plans for the total range of the firm's operations — from woodlands, through production plants to sales operations. The specific details of model construction, the mathematical programming, and the problems encountered are illustrated by a hypothetical forest products firm. A linear model has been developed for the hypothetical firm, computer solutions have been interpreted, and suggestions have been made for implementation of results. Although the author does not attempt to quantify the value of linear programming to a firm's profitability, the many explanations and illustrations serve to support the view that managerial effectiveness is enhanced through use of the technique. Decisions regarding intermediate-range planning can be made by managers with an increased understanding of the complex relationships within their firm's production and sales functions. In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and Study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.

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