A Variable Importance-Based Differential Evolution for Large-Scale Multiobjective Optimization

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13048-13062
Number of pages15
Journal / PublicationIEEE Transactions on Cybernetics
Issue number12
Online published18 Aug 2021
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


Large-scale multiobjective optimization problems (LMOPs) bring significant challenges for traditional evolutionary operators, as their search capability cannot efficiently handle the huge decision space. Some newly designed search methods for LMOPs usually classify all variables into different groups and then optimize the variables in the same group with the same manner, which can speed up the population's convergence. Following this research direction, this article suggests a differential evolution (DE) algorithm that favors searching the variables with higher importance to the solving of LMOPs. The importance of each variable to the target LMOP is quantized and then all variables are categorized into different groups based on their importance. The variable groups with higher importance are allocated with more computational resources using DE. In this way, the proposed method can efficiently generate offspring in a low-dimensional search subspace formed by more important variables, which can significantly speed up the convergence. During the evolutionary process, this search subspace for DE will be expanded gradually, which can strike a good balance between exploration and exploitation in tackling LMOPs. Finally, the experiments validate that our proposed algorithm can perform better than several state-of-the-art evolutionary algorithms for solving various benchmark LMOPs.

Research Area(s)

  • Differential evolution (DE), large-scale optimization, multiobjective optimization, variable grouping