Department of Statistics

university of Haifa

Shmuel Gal


Address: Department of Statistics, University of Haifa

Haifa, Israel 31905

Tel: 972-4-8249004 Fax: 972-4-8253849

E. mail:

Higher Education

  • 1962: M.Sc. with special distinction

Dept. of Math. Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

Thesis: Stochastic Approximations.

Advisor: Prof. H. Kesten.

  • 1972 Ph.D. degree,

Dept. of Math., Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

Dissertation: Minimax Solution for Certain Search Problems.

Advisor: Prof. A. Dvoretzky

Teaching and Research Experience

  • 1965-1973 Senior Mathematician, Israel Aircraft Industries.
  • 1970-1973 Instructor, Dept. of ,statistics, Tel Aviv University.
  • 1973-1975 Senior Lecturer (adjunct), Dept. of Statistics, University of Haifa.
  • 1977-1978 Visiting Scientist, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center Yorktown Heights, N.Y., U.S.A.
  • 1980-1991 Adjunct Senior Teaching Fellow, Technion, Haifa, Israel.
  • 1973-1997 Research Staff Member and Program Manager Operations Research, IBM Israel Science and Technology.
  • 1995-1998 Chairman, Dept. of Statistics, University of Haifa.
  • 1994-present Professor, Dept. of Statistics, University of Haifa.

Prizes and Grants

  • 1968-1971 Received Ph.D. Grant from the Israeli Council for Research and Development.
  • The report "A Markovian Model for a Central Blood Bank" (joint with D. Chazan), won the Yoseph Levy prize granted by Israeli Operations Research Society, in January 1977.
  • 1984 - Received IBM Outstanding Innovation Award for devising new algorithms for the Elementary Functions.
  • 1992 - Received IBM Research Division Award for developing and analyzing the sequential sampling scheme for the new sorting method which combines Radix Sort and Codewords technique. A part of the work has been filed as Invention Disclosure UK8-91-0149.
  • 1995 - Received IBM Outstanding Innovation Award for devising a new algorithm for Sorting. A part of the work has been filed as Invention Disclosures UK9-94-037 and FR9-96-032.
  • 2000 - Distinguished Visitor STICERD (LSE).
  • 1999-2001 - NATO Grant PST.GLG.976391 (Rendezvous Search Theory).
  • 2009-2011 Principal investigator, NATO grant CBP.MD.CLG 983583 (Optimal Search in Networks)

Selected Publications


  • S. Gal, SEARCH GAMES, Academic Press, 1980, 216 P.
  • S. Gal (joint with S. Alpern) THE THEORY OF SEARCH GAMES AND RENDEZVOUS, Kluwer (now Springer) Academic Publishers, 2003, 319 P.

Papers (since 1988):

  • S. Alpern and S. Gal, "A Mixed Strategy Minimax Theorem without Compactness", SIAM J. Control and Optimization, Vol. 26,(1988) 1357-1361.
  • S. Gal, "Continuous Search Games", Chapter 3 of SEARCH THEORY: Some Recent Developments, D. V. Chudnovsky and G. V. Chudnovsky (eds.), Marvel Dekker, 1989, pp. 33-53.
  • S. Gal, ''The Parameter Iteration Method in Dynamic Programming'', Management Science, V. 35 No. 6, (1989) 675-684.
  • S. Gal and E. J. Anderson, "Search in a Maze", Probability in the Engineering and Informational Sciences, 4 (1990) 311-318.
  • S. Gal and Boris Bachelis, ''An Accurate Elementary Mathematical Library for the IEEE Floating point Standard'', ACM Trans. Math. Software, Vol. 17 No. 1 (1991) pp. 26-45.
  • S. Gal and D. Sheinwald, "Optimal Sampling for Finding a Cluster: an Application in Sorting", 1992, Probability in the Engineering and Informational Sciences, 7 (1993) 387-407.
  • S. Gal, Y. Hollander and A. Itai, ''Optimal Mapping in Direct Mapped Cache Environment'', Mathematical Programming 63 (1994) 371-387.
  • S. Gal and B. Klots, ''Optimal Partitioning which Maximizes the Sum of the Weighted Averages'', OPERATIONS RESEARCH, 43 (1995) 500-508.
  • S. Alpern and S. Gal, "Rendezvous Search on the Line with Distinguishable Players", SIAM J. Control and Optimization, 33 (1995) 1270-1276.
  • D. Bernstein, S. Gal and M. Rodeh, ''Mathematical Analysis of using Statistical Sampling for Estimating Computer Cache Performance'', Stochastic Models, 12 (1996) 67-75.
  • V. Baston and S. Gal, "Rendezvous on the line when the players' initial distance is given by an unknown probability distribution", SIAM J. Control and Optimization, 36 (1998) 1880-1889.
  • S. Gal, "Rendezvous search on the line", OPERATIONS RESEARCH, 47 (1999) 974-976.
  • S. Gal, "On the Optimality of a Simple Strategy for Searching Graphs", Int. J. Game Theory 29 (2001) 533-542.
  • V. Baston and S. Gal, "Rendezvous Search when Marks are left at the Starting Points", Naval Res. Log. 48 (2001) 722-731.
  • S. Alpern and S. Gal, "Searching for an Agent who may or may not Want to be Found", OPERATIONS RESEARCH 50 ( 2002) 311-323.
  • S. Gal and J. Howard, "Rendezvous-evasion search in two boxes ", OPERATIONS RESEARCH 53 (2005) 689-697.
  • E. Demaine, S. Fekete, and S. Gal, "Online Searching with Turn Cost", Theoretical Computer Science 361 (2006) 342-355.
  • S. Gal, M. Landsberger and A. Nemirovski, "Participation in auctions", GAMES and ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR 60 (2007) 75-103.
  • A. Dagan and S. Gal, "Networks Search Games with Arbitrary searcher starting point", NETWORKS Vol. 52 (2008) 156--161.
  • A. Alpern, V. Baston and S. Gal, "Network Search Games with an immobile hider without a designated searcher starting point", Int. J. Game Theory 37 (2008) 281--302.
  • S. Alpern, V. Baston and S. Gal, "Searching symmetric networks with Utalitarian-Postman paths", NETWORKS Vol 53. (2009) 393-402.
  • S. Alpern and S. Gal, "Analysis and design of selection committees: a game theoretic secretary problem, Int. J. Game Theory 38 (2009) 377--394.
  • S. Alpern, S. Gal, and E. Solan, "A sequential selection game with Vetoes". GAMES and ECONOMIC BEHAVIOR 68 (2010) 1--14.
  • S. Gal, "Search games" . Wiley Encyclopedia of Operations Research and Management Sci. (James J. Cochran, ed.), Wiley, 2011.
  • Alpern, S.; Fokkink, R.; Gal, S.; Timmer, M. "On search games that include ambush". SIAM J. Cont. and Optimization 51 (2013) 4544-4556.
  • S. Gal and J. Casas. "Succession of Hide-seek and pursuit-evasion at heterogenous locations". Journal of the Royal Society Interface. 2014.
  • S Gal, S Alpern, J Casas - "Prey should hide more randomly when a predator attacks more persistently". Journal of The Royal Society Interface, 2015.

Book Chapters:

  • S. Gal, Strategies for Searching Graphs, in GRAPH THEORY, COMBINATORICS AND ALGORITHMS, M.C. Golumbic and I. Ben-Aroyo Hartman (ed), Springer 2005, 189-214.
  • S. Gal, Search Games-A review, in SEARCH THEORY: A GAME THEORETIC PERSPECTIVE. Steve Alpern, Robbert Fokkink, Leszek GaË›sieniec, Roy Lindelauf, VS Subrahmanian (eds), Springer 2013, 3-15.

Work in Process:

  • Search and Ambush games.
  • Search - Pursue games at discrete locations

Workshop at the Lorentz Center in Honor of the 10th anniversary of Alpern and Gal's monograph on Search and Rendezvous (1 - 4 May 2012)

Workshop at the Lorentz Center on Search Games Theory and Algorithms (27 June -1 July 2016)

Course on Search Problems

Courses on Dynamic Programming and Optimization

  • exercises in dynamic programming: dp.pdf
  • syllabus of the optimization course in Logistics:syllabus