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A column-generation approach for joint mobilization and evacuation planning


Large-scale evacuations require authorities to decide and stage evacuation routes, mobilize resources, and issue evacuation orders under strict time constraints. These decisions must consider both the capacity of the road network and the evolution of the threat (e.g., a bushfire or a flood). This paper proposes, for the first time, an optimization model that jointly optimizes the mobilization and evacuation planning, taking into account the behavioral response of evacuees and the allocation of resources for communicating and implementing evacuation orders. From a technical standpoint, the model is solved by a column generation algorithm that jointly decides the evacuation route, evacuation time, and the resource allocation for each evacuated area in order to maximize the number of evacuees reaching safety and minimize the total duration of the evacuation.

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Correspondence to Pascal Van Hentenryck.

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Pillac, V., Cebrian, M. & Van Hentenryck, P. A column-generation approach for joint mobilization and evacuation planning. Constraints 20, 285–303 (2015).

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  • Evacuation planning
  • Column generation
  • Behavioral operations research