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A Decomposition, Construction and Post-Processing Approach for Nurse Rostering

Brucker, Peter; Qu, Rong; Burke, Edmund; Post, Gerhard


Peter Brucker

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Associate Professor

Edmund Burke

Gerhard Post


This paper presents our work on decomposing a specific nurse rostering problem by cyclically assigning blocks of shifts, which are designed considering both hard and soft constraints, to groups of nurses. The rest of the shifts are then assigned to the nurses to construct a schedule based on the one cyclically generated by blocks. The schedules obtained by decomposition and construction can be further improved by a variable neighborhood search. Significant results are obtained and compared with a genetic algorithm and a variable neighborhood search approach on a problem that was presented to us by our collaborator, ORTEC bv, The Netherlands. We believe that the approach has the potential to be further extended to solve a wider range of nurse rostering problems.


Brucker, P., Qu, R., Burke, E., & Post, G. (2005). A Decomposition, Construction and Post-Processing Approach for Nurse Rostering.

Conference Name Multidisciplinary International Conference on Scheduling : Theory and Applications
Publication Date Jan 1, 2005
Deposit Date Dec 12, 2005
Publicly Available Date Oct 9, 2007
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords nurse rostering problems, decomposition, variable neighborhood search
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