Scheduling English Football Fixtures over the Holiday Period Using Hyper-heuristics

  • Jonathon Gibbs
  • Graham Kendall
  • Ender Özcan
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6238)


One of the annual issues that has to be addressed in English football is producing a fixture schedule for the holiday periods that reduces the travel distance for the fans and players. This problem can be seen as a minimisation problem which must abide to the constraints set by the Football Association. In this study, the performance of selection hyper-heuristics is investigated as a solution methodology. Hyper-heuristics aim to automate the process of selecting and combining simpler heuristics to solve computational search problems. A selection hyper-heuristic stores a single candidate solution in memory and iteratively applies selected low level heuristics to improve it. The results show that the learning hyper-heuristics outperform some previously proposed approaches and solutions published by the Football Association.


Hyper-heuristic Metaheuristic Local Search Machine Learning Sports Scheduling 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathon Gibbs
    • 1
  • Graham Kendall
    • 1
  • Ender Özcan
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Computer ScienceUniversity of NottinghamNottinghamUK

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