American Society of Civil Engineers

Efficient Hybrid Genetic Algorithm for Resource Leveling via Activity Splitting

by Seyed Hossein Hashemi Doulabi, (corresponding author), (Research Assistant, Dept. of Industrial Engineering, Amirkabir Univ. of Technology, Tehran, Iran E-mail:, Abbas Seifi, (Associate Professor, Industrial Engineering and Productivity Research Center, Amirkabir Univ. of Technology, Tehran, Iran. E-mail:, and Seyed Yasser Shariat, (Teaching Assistant, Dept. of Social Science, Imam Khomeini International Univ., Ghazvin, Iran. E-mail:

Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, Vol. 137, No. 2, February 2011, pp. 137-146, (doi:

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Document type: Journal Paper
Section Heading: Cost and Schedule
Abstract: Resource leveling problem is an attractive field of research in project management. Traditionally, a basic assumption of this problem is that network activities could not be split. However, in real-world projects, some activities can be interrupted and resumed in different time intervals but activity splitting involves some cost. The main contribution of this paper lies in developing a practical algorithm for resource leveling in large-scale projects. A novel hybrid genetic algorithm is proposed to tackle multiple resource-leveling problems allowing activity splitting. The proposed genetic algorithm is equipped with a novel local search heuristic and a repair mechanism. To evaluate the performance of the algorithm, we have generated and solved a new set of network instances containing up to 5,000 activities with multiple resources. For small instances, we have extended and solved an existing mixed integer programming model to provide a basis for comparison. Computational results demonstrate that, for large networks, the proposed algorithm improves the leveling criterion at least by 76% over the early schedule solutions. A case study on a tunnel construction project has also been examined.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Resource management
Construction management

Author Keywords:
Resource leveling
Resource management
Construction project