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Advances in Civil Engineering
Volume 2015, Article ID 108780, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/108780
Research Article

Optimizing Construction Project Labor Utilization Using Differential Evolution: A Comparative Study of Mutation Strategies

Faculty of Civil Engineering, Duy Tan University, P809-K7/25 Quang Trung, Danang 550000, Vietnam

Received 18 May 2015; Accepted 12 August 2015

Academic Editor: M. C. Deo

Copyright © 2015 Nhat-Duc Hoang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

In construction management, the task of planning project schedules with consideration of labor utilization is very crucial. However, the commonly used critical path method (CPM) does not inherently take into account this issue. Consequently, the labor utilization of the project schedule derived from the CPM method often has substantial low ebbs and high peaks. This research proposes a model to obtain project schedule with the least fluctuation in labor demand while still satisfying the project deadline and maintain the project cost. The Differential Evolution (DE), a fast and efficient metaheuristic, is employed to search for the most desirable solution of project execution among numerous combinations of activities’ crew sizes and start times. Furthermore, seven DE’s mutation strategies have also been employed for solving the optimization at hand. Experiment results point out that the Target-to-Best 1 and a new hybrid mutation strategy can attain the best solution of project schedule with the least fluctuation in labor demand. Accordingly, the proposed framework can be an effective tool to assist decision-makers in the project planning phase.