Among its special features, the book 1) provides a unifying framework for sequential decision making, 2) treats simultaneously deterministic and stochastic control problems popular in modern control theory and Markovian decision popular in operations research, 3) develops the theory of deterministic optimal control problems including the Pontryagin Minimum Principle, 4) introduces recent suboptimal control and simulation-based approximation techniques (neuro-dynamic programming), which allow the practical application of dynamic programming to complex problems that involve the dual curse of large dimension and lack of an accurate mathematical model, 5) provides a comprehensive treatment of infinite horizon problems in the second volume, and an introductory treatment in the first volume.
Dimitri P. Bertsekas undergraduate studies were in engineering at the National Technical University of Athens, Greece. He obtained his MS in electrical engineering at the George Washington University, Wash. DC in 1969, and his Ph.D. in system science in 1971 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Bertsekas has held faculty positions with the Engineering-Economic Systems Dept., Stanford University (1971-1974) and the Electrical Engineering Dept. of the University of Illinois, Urbana (1974-1979). From 1979 to 2019 he was with the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.), where he served as McAfee Professor of Engineering. In 2019, he was appointed Fulton Professor of Computational Decision Making, and a full time faculty member at the department of Computer, Information, and Decision Systems Engineering at Arizona State University (ASU), Tempe, while maintaining a research position at MIT. His research spans several fields, including optimization, control, large-scale computation, and data communication networks, and is closely tied to his teaching and book authoring activities. He has written numerous research papers, and eighteen books and research monographs, several of which are used as textbooks in MIT and ASU classes. Most recently Dr Bertsekas has been focusing on reinforcement learning, and authored a textbook in 2019, and a research monograph on its distributed and multiagent implementation aspects in 2020.
Professor Bertsekas was awarded the INFORMS 1997 Prize for Research Excellence in the Interface Between Operations Research and Computer Science for his book "Neuro-Dynamic Programming", the 2000 Greek National Award for Operations Research, the 2001 ACC John R. Ragazzini Education Award, the 2009 INFORMS Expository Writing Award, the 2014 ACC Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award for "contributions to the foundations of deterministic and stochastic optimization-based methods in systems and control," the 2014 Khachiyan Prize for Life-Time Accomplishments in Optimization, the SIAM/MOS 2015 George B. Dantzig Prize, and the 2022 IEEE Control Systems Award. In 2018, he was awarded, jointly with his coauthor John Tsitsiklis, the INFORMS John von Neumann Theory Prize, for the contributions of the research monographs "Parallel and Distributed Computation" and "Neuro-Dynamic Programming". In 2001, he was elected to the United States National Academy of Engineering for "pioneering contributions to fundamental research, practice and education of optimization/control theory, and especially its application to data communication networks."
Dr. Bertsekas' recent books are "Introduction to Probability: 2nd Edition" (2008), "Convex Optimization Theory" (2009), "Dynamic Programming and Optimal Control," Vol. I, (2017), and Vol. II: (2012), "Abstract Dynamic Programming" (2018), "Convex Optimization Algorithms" (2015), "Reinforcement Learning and Optimal Control" (2019), and "Rollout, Policy Iteration, and Distributed Reinforcement Learning" (2020), all published by Athena Scientific.