Self-configuring Crossover


Crossover is a core genetic operator in many evolutionary algorithms (EAs). The performance of such EAs on a given problem is dependent on properly configuring crossover. A small set of common crossover operators is used in the vast majority of EAs, typically fixed for the entire evolutionary run. Selecting which crossover operator to use and tuning its associated parameters to obtain acceptable performance on a specific problem often is a time consuming manual process. Even then a custom crossover operator may be required to achieve optimal performance. Finally, the best crossover configuration may be dependent on the state of the evolutionary run. This paper introduces the Self-Configuring Crossover operator encoded with linear genetic programming which addresses these shortcomings while relieving the user from the burden of crossover configuration. To demonstrate its general applicability, the novel crossover operator was applied without any problem specific tuning. Results are presented showing it to outperform the traditional crossover operators arithmetic crossover, uniform crossover, and n-point crossover on the Rosenbrock, Rastrigin, Offset Rastrigin, DTrap, and NK Landscapes benchmark problems.

Meeting Name

13th Annual Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference, GECCO'11 (2011: Jul. 12-16, Dublin, Ireland)


Computer Science


Missouri University of Science and Technology. Natural Computation Laboratory

Keywords and Phrases

Dynamic Crossover; Linear Genetic Programming; Parameter Control; Self-Configuration

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2011 Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2011