Two-stage column generation: a novel framework

Column generation has been intensively used in the last decades to compute good quality lower bounds for combinatorial problems reformulated through Dantzig-Wolfe decomposition. In this work we propose a novel framework to cope with problems in which the structure of the original formulation, namely the presence of a combinatorial number of decision variables, does not allow for straightforward reformulation. The basic idea is to start from a meaningful subset of original variables, apply the DW reformulation to the subset, solve the reformulation with column generation and perform the explicit pricing on original variables retracing back the reformulation and using complementary-slackness conditions. The Discrete Split Delivery Vehicle Routing Problem with Time Windows (DSDVRPTW) is used as an illustration for the method, which provides a new exact approach to the problem. Preliminary computational experiments are reported. This is joint work with Matteo Salani.

Presented at:
6th Joint Operations Research Days, EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland, September 12, 2008

 Record created 2009-06-15, last modified 2018-09-13

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