Journal of Heuristics

, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 359–374 | Cite as

Solving a bi-objective nurse rerostering problem by using a utopic Pareto genetic heuristic



Nurse rerostering arises when at least one nurse announces that she will be unable to undertake the tasks previously assigned to her. The problem amounts to building a new roster that satisfies the hard constraints already met by the current one and, as much as possible, fulfils two groups of soft constraints which define the two objectives to be attained. A bi-objective genetic heuristic was designed on the basis of a population of individuals characterised by pairs of chromosomes, whose fitness complies with the Pareto ranking of the respective decoded solution. It includes an elitist policy, as well as a new utopic strategy, introduced for purposes of diversification. The computational experiments produced promising results for the practical application of this approach to real life instances arising from a public hospital in Lisbon.


Nurse scheduling Rerostering Bi-objective heuristics Genetic algorithms 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Instituto Superior de Economia e Gestão, Departamento de MatemáticaUniversidade Técnica de LisboaLisbonPortugal
  2. 2.Centro de Investigação OperacionalUniversidade de LisboaLisbonPortugal

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