K. D. Tocher

Keith Douglas "Toch"[2] Tocher (1921–1981) was a computer scientist known for contributions to computer simulation.[3]

K. D. Tocher
Died30 December 1981 (aged 60)[1]
Alma materUniversity of London
Scientific career
Fieldscomputer simulation
InstitutionsUniversity of Southampton[1]
ThesisThe design and statistical analysis of experiments (1952)
Doctoral studentsMeir M. Lehman

Tocher was born in 1921 and gained a first-class BSc in Mathematics in 1941 from University College London, a BSc in Statistics in 1946 from University of London and a PhD in 1952 part-time at Imperial College London.[4][1] In 1958 he worked for United Steel Companies under Anthony Stafford Beer,[1] and developed the first discrete-event simulation package, the General Simulation Program (GSP), a program that used a common structure to execute a range of simulations.[3][5]

He was appointed professor of operational research at the University of Southampton in 1980.[4] He was awarded the silver medal of the Operational Research Society in 1967 and served as president from 1972–73.[4]


  1. Rivett, B. H. P. (1982). "Professor K. D. Tocher, 1921-1981". Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. Series A (General). 145 (4): 525–526. JSTOR 2982123.
  2. Medina, Eden (2011). Cybernetic Revolutionaries:Technology and Politics in Allende’s Chile. MIT Press. p. 248. ISBN 0262016494.
  3. Robinson, S.; Taylor, S. J. E. (2008). "Celebrating 50 years of simulation software". Journal of Simulation. 2 (3): 127. doi:10.1057/jos.2008.16.
  4. Hollocks, B. W. (2008). "Intelligence, innovation and integrity— KD Tocher and the dawn of simulation". Journal of Simulation. 2 (3): 128. doi:10.1057/jos.2008.15.
  5. Rosenhead, J. (2006). "IFORS' Operational Research Hall of Fame Stafford Beer". International Transactions in Operational Research. 13 (6): 577–581. doi:10.1111/j.1475-3995.2006.00565.x.
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