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An evolutionary algorithm for multicriteria path optimization problems

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For many years researchers and decision makers (DMs) faced with multicriteria shortest path problems (MSPPs) have resorted to reductions to the classical shortest path problem (SPP) by means of weighted linear combinations of the criteria. Algorithmic and approximation schemes are available to solve MSPPs but these approaches often display complexities prohibitive to their implementation on real‐world applications. This paper describes the development of an Evolutionary Algorithm (EA) approach to MSPPs on networks with multiple independent criteria. The EA approach is shown to sufficiently explore the underlying network space, generate large candidate path sets, and evolve high quality approximations to the optimal MSPP solution(s). Opportunities for early termination of the EA in time‐critical applications are also offered. Among the issues for further work is the integration of the EA as a tool within a GIS for path optimization.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: National Center for Geocomputation, National University of Ireland Maynooth, Co. Kildare, Ireland

Publication date: April 1, 2006

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