Foundations of Location Analysis

Volume 155 of the series International Series in Operations Research & Management Science pp 39-59


Median Problems in Networks

  • Vladimir MarianovAffiliated withDepartment of Electrical Engineering, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile Email author 
  • , Daniel SerraAffiliated withDepartment of Economics and Business, Pompeu Fabra University

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Suppose a number of geographically distributed customers are demanding a service or good, and facilities providing it need to be optimally located. Once facilities are deployed, either customers travel to the facilities to satisfy their needs, or vehicles travel from the facilities to customers’ locations, carrying the goods to be delivered. The p-median problem finds the optimal location of exactly p facilities, so that the sum of the distances between customers and their closest facilities, measured along the shortest paths, is minimized. Since the number n of customers is known, by dividing the objective by n, the minimum average distance between customers and facilities is obtained too.