A multiobjective single bus corridor scheduling using machine learning-based predictive models

Bing Chen, Ruibin Bai, Jiawei Li, Yueni Liu, Ning Xue, Jianfeng Ren

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)
73 Downloads (Pure)


Many real-life optimisation problems, including those in production and logistics, have uncertainties that pose considerable challenges for practitioners. In spite of considerable efforts, the current methods are still not satisfactory. This is primarily caused by a lack of effective methods to deal with various uncertainties. Existing literature comes from two isolated research communities, namely the operations research community and the machine learning community. In the operations research community, uncertainties are often modelled and solved through techniques like stochastic programming or robust optimisation, which are often criticised for their over conservativeness. In the machine learning community, the problem is formulated as a dynamic control problem and solved through techniques like supervised learning and/or reinforcement learning, which could suffer from being myopic and unstable. In this paper, we aim to fill this research gap and develop a novel framework that takes advantages of both short-term accuracy from mathematical models and high-quality future forecasts from machine learning modules. We demonstrate the practicality and feasibility of our approach for a real-life bus scheduling problem and two controlled bus scheduling instances that are generated artificially. To our knowledge, the proposed framework represents the first multi-objective bus-headway-optimisation method for non-timetabled bus schedule with major practical constraints being considered. The advantages of our proposed methods are also discussed, along with factors that need to be carefully considered for practical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-145
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Production Research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jan 2023


  • bus scheduling
  • combinatorial optimisation
  • machine learning
  • multi-objective optimisation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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