My News

My News


  • Apr 2022: I have now moved to SLB where I work at the SLB Research Centre in Cambridge.
  • Jun 2020: I started working as a Senior Researcher for Invenia Labs, Cambridge on optimizing the US electricity grid.
  • Aug 2016: From August 15-19, I shall be presenting the COM4 Summer School at the University of Jyvaskyla, Finland. Afterwards, the Industrial Optimization Group, headed by Kaisa Miettinen, are kindly hosting me for a further week.
  • Jul 2016: I've accepted an invitation from Xavier Gandibleux to give a talk at the SUMMER SCHOOL ON MULTIOBJECTIVE OPTIMIZATION (June 12-16, 2017) at University of Lille, France. The topics are centered on multi-objective optimization: exact algorithms, approximation algorithms, (meta)heuristics, DM preferences, applications, and software aspects.
  • Jul 2016: Richard Allmendinger and I have been busy preparing a KTP with Biopharm Services, a company developing software for planning and managing the manufacture of modern biopharmaceuticals including macromolecules.
  • Jul 2016: The Leibniz-Zentrum fur Informatik, Schloss Dagstuhl, has notified us that our seminar "Personalized Multiobjective Optimization: An Analytics Perspective" has been accepted and will run 15-19 January 2018. The seminar was proposed by Kathrin Klamroth, Joshua Knowles, Guenter Rudolph and Margaret Wiecek. More details are here
  • Jun 2016: Steve Miller's and my work on cooperation in networks and how that might be stimulated by fluctuations in population size has turned out to influence a paper about understanding the longevity of the Maya kingdoms.
  • Jun 2016: I gave a couple of "Sunshine Talks" to Year 8 pupils from several local schools. They now understand how GPS localization and SATNAVs work - or at least some of them might, and some may even not have been put off science for life!
  • Jun 2016: Simon Fong passed the first year of his PhD on Information Geometry, and promptly went to listen to the latest ideas on the topic at IGAIA.
  • May 2016: Google Scholar tells me that 30 of my papers now have 100 citations or more (each), not that we are supposed to care about such things.
  • May 2016: I am very pleased to see that almost all students passed the module I co-taught this year, Introduction to Maths for CS. Well done!
  • Apr 2016: Caro Zhang, who is working with Philip Day and others at Manchester has been making excellent progress in the first year on her PhD. She has had to get on top of a huge amount of technical material, lab work, and keep several supervisors happy. I think it will be worth it. Watch this space for more.
  • Mar 2016: Simon Fong gave a series of talks on Riemannian manifolds to the ML reading group.
  • Mar 2016: Richard A. Watson (Southampton) and his work on intelligent evolution has been featured in the cover article of the March 26th edition of New Scientist.
  • Feb 2016: The 2017 edition of the IEEE Conference on Computational Intelligence in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (CIBCB) will be held in Manchester. The general chair, Richard Allmendinger (formerly of my group), put in a fantastic bid for the event and will I am sure compile a spectacular program. Mark it in your diaries: August 23-25, 2017. Here is the Call for Papers.
  • January 2016: Funding obtained from the European Commission Marie Sklodowska Curie Fellowship scheme. MSC-IF-EF-ST "ACTING-NOW" 704330 Krzysztof Michalak (Fellow) / Joshua Knowles (Host / PI). Algorithmic Containment of Threats in Graphs, Networks, or Webs.
  • January 2016: Project funded from the EPSRC institutional fund: "Achieving the earliest diagnosis of Cancer through a cascaded computational decision support system", PI: Shan He; CIs: Andrew Peet, Joshua Knowles, Georgios Gkoutos, Nigel Davies, Ralf Weber.
  • Annual leave!
  • December 2015: Congratulations to "Dr" David Buckley for passing his PhD viva with (very) minor amendments. Well done, David!
  • December 2015: Mark Platt came to visit Caro Zhang, Phil Day and me to discuss projects to do with evolution of DNA aptamers.
  • December 2015: IEEE SSCI (Cape Town), Keynote talk and Panel Discussion.
  • November 2015: Pleased that, following individual tutorial meetings, our MSc students have reported a high level of general satisfaction with the curriculum, support and environment.
  • November 2015: Gave feedback to two of my colleagues on their excellent research proposals for ERC starting grants.
  • November 2015: Kindly been invited to examine a PhD candidate working with Irina Spasic at Cardiff University.
  • November 2015: Agreed to examine an interesting looking PhD thesis on metaheuristics at the Engineering Design Centre, Cambridge University in January 2016.
  • November 2015: Set notation, operations and axioms have now been added to the course Intro 2 Maths for CS (for some 1st Year UG students).
  • November 2015: Travelled to Southampton to complete my duties as external examiner of the MSc on Computer Science and MSc on Artificial Intelligence for 2014/2015.
  • October 2015: Dimo Brockhoff, Boris Naujoks, Karthik Sindhya and I have received a good number of submissions for our Special Issue of Computers and Operations Research.
  • October 2015: Hot on Jussi's heels, Robin Purshouse and Shaul Salomon from Sheffield visited to discuss their research progress with the sParEGO algorithm for robust multiobjective optimization.
  • October 2015: Jussi Hakanen from FinnOpt and the University of Jyvaskyla visited for 3 days to discuss multiobjective optimization in expensive and noisy environments.
  • October 2015: Accepted an invitation to join the RSGC (Phd student monitoring committee of the School).
  • October 2015: Joined the supervision team of Caro Zhang (PhD on Leukaemia treatments) at University of Manchester. We will be looking to evolve DNA aptamers to act as tyrosine kinase inhibitors using the Combimatrix DNA microarray platform, a further application of closed-loop optimization.
  • October 2015: Michael Emmerich and Boris Naujoks have kindly invited me to give a keynote talk at Lorentz Centre, NL in 2016. The topic will be surrogate-modeling based multiobjective optimization.
  • October 2015: Went to a DAASE project meeting at York.
  • October 2015: Commenced supervision of PhD student Simon Fong. His project is on information geometry optimization.
  • September 2015: Congratulations! Dave Buckley has successfully submitted his PhD thesis. Well done, David (and Ke and me)!
  • September 2015: Congratulations! Rob Lyon has successfully submitted his PhD thesis. Well done, Rob (as well as Ben, John and me)!
  • September 2015: I submitted a Marie Curie Fellowship application to host Krzysztof Michalak for a research project on the Firefighter Problem.
  • September 2015: I went to the UKCI workshop at University of Exeter to present work by Bianca-Cristina Cristescu and me on the ParEGO algorithm for Bayesian multiobjective optimization (or optimization by Gaussian process surrogate modeling).
  • July 2015: My proposal "MOODCHESTER" for a Citizen Science project for the City of Science 2016 exhibition was shortlisted by the Directors of the European City of Science.
  • June 2015: EPSRC selected me to attend their forthcoming consultative Workshop on State of the Art in Simulation and Design.
  • June 2015: The Decision and Cognitive Sciences (DCS) group at Manchester Business School has given me an Honorary Professorship. This means I can visit my Manchester PhD students and start closer collaborations with some of the excellent DCS staff, including Richard Allmendinger and Manuel Lopez-Ibanez, who will be joining the group in September.
  • June 2015: I visited Robin Purshouse and group at ACSE Dept, U. Sheffield to exchange ideas about developing the ParEGO optimization algorithm and Liger software pipeline for the Jaguar Land Rover EPSRC project on Robust Design EP/L025760/1.
  • May 2015: CDT student, Steve Miller, has been working with me on cooperation in networks. We have just heard that our paper "Population Fluctuation Promotes Cooperation in Networks" has been accepted in Nature Scientific Reports.
  • April 2015: Ahmad Almakhlafi passed his PhD viva (with corrections). Congratulations Ahmad! We also now have a couple of new papers accepted based on the work.
  • March 2015: Optimization is a field touching many others, and in Business and Management (or Operations) it really is "the business". Given this, I am heartened and glad to see that the ABS list used by many Business Schools to rate journals has now given both IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation and European Journal of Operational Research a rating of 4. In fact, the former is ranked first on various objective measures, so next time it may well be moved to the highest 4* rating reserved for the elite two or three journals in each subdiscipline. Details are here.
  • February 2015: I have now accepted the position, Professor of Computational Intelligence for Software Engineering, in the Natural Computation group, at the School of Computer Science, University of Birmingham. The appointment starts 1st June 2015. Many thanks for all the warm congratulations received.
  • January 2015: The newsletter of the Multiple Criteria Decision Making Society reports on the recent Dagstuhl seminar on Understanding Complexity in Multiobjective Optimization.
  • September 2014: Christian Blum visited me and the MLO Group this week. Christian gave us a talk about recent work on problem reduction for CPlex, and on synchronisation / desynchronisation applications based on models of firefly flashing and frog croaking. Very interesting! Thanks, Chris.
  • September 2014: Marco Dorigo, has been announced as the 2015 Recipient of the IEEE Frank Rosenblatt Award. Previous winners include Kohonen, Hopfield, Vapnik and Hinton. Congratulations Marco !
  • September 2014: Simon Lovell (FLS), Julia Handl (MBS) and I have won some internal EPSRC funding to employ a postdoc to continue our work on ab initio protein structure prediction. We will be making modifications to a version of the Rosetta codebase at the University of Washington, the world-leading fragment assembly method.
  • Brilliant finds: Since August 9th 2014, five new pulsars have been discovered and confirmed in the LOFAR Tied-Array All-Sky Survey using a new classifier for pulsar candidates, proposed and implemented by CDT student Rob Lyon. Sally Cooper, PhD student at Jodrell Bank, takes a lot of the credit for these finds too. Sally works with Ben Stappers; Rob works with Ben, John Brooke and me. Details of the pulsars, catchily named J0317, J0305, J2057, J2336 and J1814 can all be found at LOTAAS.
    This was also reported in the Autumn edition of the CS research newsletter (page 5).
  • Interesting, if you like this sort of thing at all, that Manchester comes second in the UK on a sort of University-wide version of the h-index (based on evidence from Google Scholar Citations, at least) according to this report.
  • Ofer Shir, Thomas Baeck and I are reprising our collaboration (from GECCO 2010 -see below) on closed-loop optimization, aka experimental evolution. We are organizing a week-long workshop at an international centre along with some other folk who work in this area. Exciting stuff - more soon.
  • Well done to MLO CDT student, Andrew Webb, for organizing himself a radio microphone and slide-advancer for his talk at the ALife conference in New York. Apparently he came out from behind the lectern and strolled around "like he was Steve Jobs", for which he received some congratulations. Very good work for his first international conference presentation!
  • I heard belatedly of the death in July of (Prof) David Broomhead - sad news. Back in 2007, I was lucky enough to work with Dave on one project with Niklas Ludtke and others, and it was a most enjoyable and stimulating experience. Several obituaries have been written of this "top bloke": David Sumpter's and Douglas Kell's capture him very well for me.
  • On 22 May, I attended the Women in Science Wikipedia Edit-a-thon run by Wikimedia UK, along with Dr Sarah Chatwin from the research office. I still have quite a few new entries to do. Photo here.
  • April 2014: Ahmad Almakhlafi has finished the first draft of his PhD thesis. Good work, Ahmad.
  • Very well done to MLO PhD student, Andrew Webb, for getting his first paper in the field of artificial life accepted. He will be going to New York and the ALIFE 14 Conference in late July.
  • I have finished my reviews for PPSN XIII. Some very good papers - what a shame I am not going this year.
  • Congrats to MLO PhD student, Rob Lyon, for having his paper on a Hellinger distance-based stream classifier accepted for ICPR.
  • 20 Feb 2014: Several members of MLO Group attended the Manchester Debating Union event "This House Would Create Artificial Intelligence" debated by Murray Shanahan, Stuart Armstrong and our very own Ross D. King.
  • I shall be Track Co-Chair (along with Dimo Brockhoff) of the Evolutionary Multi-Criterion Optimization (EMO) track at GECCO 2014, which is taking place in Vancouver in July. Please send in your best papers and/or volunteer to review them ! See you in BC. Also: congratulations to Dimo on the birth of his first child.
  • MLO PhD student, Rob Lyon, is going to the IEEE SMC Workshop, in Manchester, in October 2013. His presentation is about assessing Stream Classifiers for a Pulsar Candidate Selection problem.
  • In September 2013, I went to the SIMCO (multi-criterion optimization) Workshop at the Lorentz Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. I was invited speaker on the topic of Non-Standard Problems.
  • I visited the University of Coimbra, Portugal, in August 2013. I am an external assessor on a grant about multiobjective sequence alignment MOSAL, and heard some very impressive presentations about the progress being made. I also enjoyed the city and was kindly taken to see the Coimbra version of Fado.
  • I took part for the first time in the Theory of Evolutionary Algorithms seminar at Dagstuhl in July 2013. I wasn't presenting and it was a good opportunity to listen and learn something, especially about Black-Box Complexity and Budgeted Optimization. Jon Shapiro presented some of his recent work using Drift Analysis to model effects of crossover. The meeting was written up in this report.
  • MLO PhD student, David Buckley, who is co-supervised by Ke Chen and me, presented at the IEEE Computational Intelligence and Games Conference in Niagara Falls in July 2013. He presented his research on estimating skill at a First-Person Shooter game from raw keyboard and mouse data.
  • Ahmad Almakhlafi, MLO Phd Student, presented at the IEEE CEC conference in June 2013, in Cancun, Mexico. His work was on the automatic selection of members of an Algorithm Portfolio.
  • Julia Handl, lecturer in the Manchester Business School, presented some work co-authored with me at MCDM-2013. We had abstracts about Evidence Accumulation in clustering, and Delayed Objectives in multiobjective optimization (with Richard Allmendinger and Anna Lavygina). The meeting took place in June in Malaga.
  • The next Dagstuhl seminar on Multiobjective Optimization has been approved, and scheduled for January 2015. I will be co-organizing it along with esteemed colleagues, Salvatore Greco, Kathrin Klamroth and Guenter Rudolph. Here are the details.
  • There is a Dagstuhl Seminar on "Learning in Multiobjective Optimization", January 2012. I am co-organizing it along with Salvatore Greco, Kaisa Miettinen and Eckart Zitzler. More info is here.

  • Richard Allmendinger is going to ECTA 2011 in Paris in October 2011. He is presenting our work on Evolutionary Algorithms in Lethal Environments. The paper is nominated for a best paper award.

  • There is a CICADA workshop on Complexity in the Life Sciences on September 6th 2011 in the School, where I am talking about fitness landscape modelling.

  • "Efficient discovery of anti-inflammatory small molecule combinations using evolutionary computing" has been accepted for publication in Nature Chemical Biology. I am a co-author along with Richard Allmendinger and a team of others. Ben Small is the first author.

  • Richard Allmendinger and I are off to GECCO 2011 in Dublin, Ireland. Richard is presenting our work on reinforcement learning policies for switching between constraint-handling strategies.

  • The Operations Research Society has a Decision Analysis special interest group (DASIG). I am presenting at their annual workshop in June 2011 on "Current trends in evolutionary multiobjective optimization".

  • Thomas Baeck, Ofer Shir and I are presenting a tutorial on Evolutionary Algorithms in Experimental Optimization at GECCO 2010.

  • David Corne and I are running the EMO track at GECCO 2009. Send in your best papers please!
  • Thanks to IEEE CIS for awarding me the Trans. on Evol. Comp. Outstanding Paper Award for my paper on ParEGO, which appeared in 2006. More details are here.

  • I have transferred to the MLO Group of the School of Computer Science.

  • David Corne has some nice "rants" about the ethics of refereeing and also a page called pishc - people I should have cited.

  • A Workshop on Multiobjective Problem Solving from Nature at PPSN IX, was held 9th September 2006. The workshop chairs were Joshua Knowles, David Corne and Kalyanmoy Deb.

  • Joshua Knowles and David Corne were awarded the IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation Outstanding Paper Published in 2003 Award by the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society. The award was for the paper, J. Knowles and D. Corne, "Properties of an adaptive archiving algorithm for storing nondominated vectors", TEC 7(2), 100--116. It was presented on July 19th 2006 at WCCI, Vancouver, by Prof Xin Yao. Details of the award can be found at the IEEE CIS page.

  • Yew Soon Ong and Joshua Knowles ran a special session on evolutionary computation approaches to expensive optimization problems at WCCI 2006, in Vancouver.

  • A semi-plenary talk at MOPGP on Evolutionary Multiobjective Optimization, cowritten by Joshua Knowles (speaker) and David Corne was given, 12th June 2006. Abstract.

Joshua D. Knowles
Last modified: Jan 2011