The development of a multi-objective Tabu Search algorithm for continuous optimisation problems

D. M. Jaeggi*, G. T. Parks, T. Kipouros, P. J. Clarkson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

133 Citations (Scopus)


While there have been many adaptations of some of the more popular meta-heuristics for continuous multi-objective optimisation problems, Tabu Search has received relatively little attention, despite its suitability and effectiveness on a number of real-world design optimisation problems. In this paper we present an adaptation of a single-objective Tabu Search algorithm for multiple objectives. Further, inspired by path relinking strategies common in discrete optimisation problems, we enhance our algorithm to allow it to handle problems with large numbers of design variables. This is achieved by a novel parameter selection strategy that, unlike a full parametric analysis, avoids the use of objective function evaluations, thus keeping the overall computational cost of the procedure to a minimum. We assess the performance of our two Tabu Search variants on a range of standard test functions and compare it to a leading multi-objective Genetic Algorithm, NSGA-II. The path relinking-inspired parameter selection scheme gives a clear performance improvement over the basic multi-objective Tabu Search adaptation and both variants perform comparably with the NSGA-II.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1192-1212
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Operational Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is supported by the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) under grant number GR/R64100/01. The authors would also like to thank Prof. Bill Dawes for his support and encouragement, and the anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on the first version of this paper.


  • Genetic algorithms
  • Global optimisation
  • Meta-heuristics
  • Multiple criteria analysis
  • Tabu Search


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