Title: A path relinking-based scatter search for the resource-constrained project scheduling problem

Authors: François Berthaut; Robert Pellerin; Adnène Hajji; Nathalie Perrier

Addresses: Jarislowsky/SNC-Lavalin Research Chair in the Management of International Projects and CIRRELT, Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering, Polytechnique Montréal, P.O. Box 6079 Station Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec H3C 3A7, Canada ' Jarislowsky/SNC-Lavalin Research Chair in the Management of International Projects and CIRRELT, Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering, Polytechnique Montréal, P.O. Box 6079 Station Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec H3C 3A7, Canada ' Department of Operations and Decision Systems and CIRRELT, Faculty of Business Administration, Laval University, 2325, de la Terrasse, Québec, Québec G1V 0A6, Canada ' Jarislowsky/SNC-Lavalin Research Chair in the Management of International Projects and CIRRELT, Department of Mathematics and Industrial Engineering, Polytechnique Montréal, P.O. Box 6079 Station Centre-ville, Montréal, Québec H3C 3A7, Canada

Abstract: Project scheduling has received growing attention from researchers in recent decades in order to recommend models and methods to tackle problems for real-size projects. In this paper, we consider the resource-constrained project scheduling problem (RCPSP), which consists of scheduling activities in order to minimise the project duration in presence of precedence and resource constraints. We propose a hybrid metaheuristic based on scatter search that involves forward-backward improvement and reversing the project network at each iteration of the search. A bidirectional path relinking method with a new move is used as a solution combination method and a new improvement procedure is proposed in the reference set update method. The proposed method is applied to the standard benchmark projects from the PSPLIB library. The computational results show that the proposed scatter search produces high-quality solutions in a reasonable computational time and is among the best performing metaheuristics.

Keywords: resource-constrained project scheduling problems; RCPSP; project scheduling; precedence constraints; resource constraints; metaheuristics; makespan minimisation; scatter search; path relinking.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPOM.2018.090372

International Journal of Project Organisation and Management, 2018 Vol.10 No.1, pp.1 - 36

Received: 04 Jul 2016
Accepted: 31 Jul 2017

Published online: 13 Mar 2018 *

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