Doctoral Seminar on Design and Application of Modern Heuristics

A four day VHB doctoral course on the "Design and Application of Modern Heuristics" was held at the Johannes Gutenberg Universität between Sept 18 and Sept 21. The course was given by Franz Rothlauf; Jörn Grahl contributed to the class. The course is for first and second-year PhD students working on optimization problems in management, finance and logistics. It covers theoretical foundations of heuristic search algorithms, discusses when heuristic algorithms should be used, and, most importantly, how modern heuristics can be effectively designed. Large parts of the course were devoted to solving actual problems the participants faced in their research. The slides of the class are available here: as PDF an as PPTX.

The class was a success and the particpants enjoyed the nice and lively atmosphere in the class and the intensive work throughout the four days (escpecially the second evening in one of Mainz's cocktail bars). The class helped the participants in their PhD and also to improve their solution approaches (exact as well as heuristic). A next edition of the course is planned for 2014. If you are interested in the class, please contact Franz Rothlauf (

The course is a VHB Prodok doctoral course ( open to doctoral students from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The goal of Prodok courses is to make cutting edge know-how accessible to doctoral students whose universities have no structured graduate program and/or some specific technical expertise is not locally available.