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Hyper-Heuristics: A Survey of the State of the Art

30 Pages Posted: 27 Nov 2013  

Edmund K. Burke

University of Stirling

Michel Gendreau

University of Montreal

Matthew Hyde

University of East Anglia (UEA)

Graham Kendall

University of Nottingham

Gabriela Ochoa

University of Nottingham - School of Computer Science

Ender Özcan

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Rong Qu

University of Nottingham

Date Written: December 2013

Abstract

Hyper-heuristics comprise a set of approaches that are motivated (at least in part) by the goal of automating the design of heuristic methods to solve hard computational search problems. An underlying strategic research challenge is to develop more generally applicable search methodologies. The term hyper-heuristic is relatively new; it was first used in 2000 to describe heuristics to choose heuristics in the context of combinatorial optimisation. However, the idea of automating the design of heuristics is not new; it can be traced back to the 1960s. The definition of hyper-heuristics has been recently extended to refer to a search method or learning mechanism for selecting or generating heuristics to solve computational search problems. Two main hyper-heuristic categories can be considered: heuristic selection and heuristic generation. The distinguishing feature of hyper-heuristics is that they operate on a search space of heuristics (or heuristic components) rather than directly on the search space of solutions to the underlying problem that is being addressed. This paper presents a critical discussion of the scientific literature on hyper-heuristics including their origin and intellectual roots, a detailed account of the main types of approaches, and an overview of some related areas. Current research trends and directions for future research are also discussed.

Suggested Citation

Burke, Edmund K. and Gendreau, Michel and Hyde, Matthew and Kendall, Graham and Ochoa, Gabriela and Özcan, Ender and Qu, Rong, Hyper-Heuristics: A Survey of the State of the Art (December 2013). Journal of the Operational Research Society, Vol. 64, Issue 12, pp. 1695-1724, 2013. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2360048 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/jors.2013.71

Edmund K. Burke (Contact Author)

University of Stirling

Stirling, Scotland FK9 4LA
United Kingdom

Michel Gendreau

University of Montreal ( email )

C.P. 6128 succursale Centre-ville
Montreal, Quebec H3C 3J7
Canada

Matthew Hyde

University of East Anglia (UEA) ( email )

Norwich Research Park
Norwich, Norfolk NR4 7TJ
United Kingdom

Graham Kendall

University of Nottingham ( email )

University Park
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom

Gabriela Ochoa

University of Nottingham - School of Computer Science ( email )

Jubilee Campus
Wollaton Road
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom

Ender Özcan (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Rong Qu

University of Nottingham ( email )

University Park
Nottingham, NG8 1BB
United Kingdom

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