AAAI Publications, Twelfth Annual Symposium on Combinatorial Search

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A General Interactive Approach for Solving Multi-Objective Combinatorial Optimization Problems with Imprecise Preferences
Nawal Benabbou, Thibaut Lust

Last modified: 2019-06-24


In this paper, we develop a general interactive method to solve multi-objective combinatorial optimization problems with imprecise preferences. Assuming that preferences can be represented by a parameterized scalarizing function, we iteratively ask preferences queries to the decision maker in order to reduce the uncertainty over the preference parameters until being able to determine her preferred solution. To produce informative preference queries at each step, we generate promising solutions using the extreme points of the polyhedron representing the admissible preference parameters and then we ask the decision maker to compare two of these solutions (we propose different selection strategies). These extreme points are also used to provide a stopping criterion guaranteeing that the returned solution is optimal (or near-optimal) according to the decision maker's preferences. For the multi-objective spanning tree problem with a linear aggregation function, we provide numerical results to demonstrate the practical efficiency of our approach and we compare our results to a recent approach based on minimax regret, where preferences are asked during the construction of a solution. We show that better results are achieved by our method both in terms of running time and number of questions.

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