Skip to main content

Driver scheduling problem modelling


The Drivers Scheduling Problem (DSP) consists of selecting a set of duties for vehicle drivers, such as bus, train and boat drivers or plane pilots, for the transportation of passengers or goods. This is a complex problem as it involves several constraints related to labour and company rules and may also entail different evaluation criteria and objectives. The ability to develop an adequate model for this problem, which can represent the real problem as closely as possible is an important research area.

In this paper we present new mathematical models for the DSP which embody the very complexity of the drivers scheduling problem, besides demonstrating that the solutions generated by these models can easily be implemented in real situations.

On the strength of extensive passenger transportation experience in bus companies in Portugal, we propose and test new alternative models to formulate the DSP. These models are based on Set Partitioning/Covering models. Moreover, they also take into account the bus operator issues and the user’s standpoint and environment.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  • Agra A (1993) Master thesis, Department of Statistics and Operations Research, University of Lisbon, Portugal

  • Borndörfer R, Grötschel M, Pfetsch E (2006) Public transportation to the fORe! Or/MS Today 33(2):30–40

    Google Scholar 

  • Chu P, Beasley J (1995) A genetic algorithm for the set partitioning problem. Imperial College, London

    Google Scholar 

  • Hillier F, Lieberman G (1995) Introduction to operations research. McGraw-Hill, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Portugal R (2006) A new approach for the drivers scheduling problem in transportation companies. PhD thesis, Department of Statistics and Operations Research, University of Lisbon, Portugal

  • Ravindran A, Phillips D, Solberg J (1987) Operations research: principles and practice. Wiley, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Winston W (1994) Operations research: applications and algorithms, 3rd edn. Duxbury Press, Pacific Grove

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Helena R. Lourenço.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Portugal, R., Lourenço, H.R. & Paixão, J.P. Driver scheduling problem modelling. Public Transp 1, 103–120 (2009).

Download citation

  • Published:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: