Neural Network-Based Information Transfer for Dynamic Optimization

Xiao Fang Liu, Zhi Hui Zhan, Tian Long Gu, Sam Kwong, Zhenyu Lu, Henry Been Lirn Duh, Jun Zhang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)


In dynamic optimization problems (DOPs), as the environment changes through time, the optima also dynamically change. How to adapt to the dynamic environment and quickly find the optima in all environments is a challenging issue in solving DOPs. Usually, a new environment is strongly relevant to its previous environment. If we know how it changes from the previous environment to the new one, then we can transfer the information of the previous environment, e.g., past solutions, to get new promising information of the new environment, e.g., new high-quality solutions. Thus, in this paper, we propose a neural network (NN)-based information transfer method, named NNIT, to learn the transfer model of environment changes by NN and then use the learned model to reuse the past solutions. When the environment changes, NNIT first collects the solutions from both the previous environment and the new environment and then uses an NN to learn the transfer model from these solutions. After that, the NN is used to transfer the past solutions to new promising solutions for assisting the optimization in the new environment. The proposed NNIT can be incorporated into population-based evolutionary algorithms (EAs) to solve DOPs. Several typical state-of-the-art EAs for DOPs are selected for comprehensive study and evaluated using the widely used moving peaks benchmark. The experimental results show that the proposed NNIT is promising and can accelerate algorithm convergence.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8767010
Pages (from-to)1557-1570
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Neural Networks and Learning Systems
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Dynamic optimization problem (DOP)
  • information transfer
  • neural network (NN)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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