Dr John Drake and Professor Edmund Burke
Optimisation problems often explore a search space which is too large to enumerate and exhaustively search for an optimal solution. Various heuristics and metaheuristics have been applied successfully to problems of this nature. One drawback of such approaches is the necessity to manually adapt the method used to solve different problem domains or classes of problem. Hyper-heuristics are a class of high-level search techniques which aim to raise the level of generality at which search methods operate. The last decade or so has seen sustained research effort devoted to developing hyper-heuristic methods, much of which is a result of pioneering work done by researchers at Leicester. This project will apply hyper-heuristic methods to real-world combinatorial optimisation problems in collaboration with industrial partners at BT (British Telecom), reducing the time required to develop such methods and the burden on the human involved in the development cycle.