Tour merging via branch-decomposition

William Cook, Paul Seymour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

123 Scopus citations


Robertson and Seymour introduced branch-width as a new connectivity invariant of graphs in their proof of the Wagner conjecture. Decompositions based on this invariant provide a natural framework for implementing dynamic-programming algorithms to solve graph optimization problems. We describe a heuristic method for finding branch-decompositions; the method is based on the eigenvector technique for finding graph separators. We use this as a tool to obtain high-quality tours for the traveling salesman problem by merging collections of tours produced by standard traveling salesman heuristics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-248
Number of pages16
JournalINFORMS Journal on Computing
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2003

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Software
  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research


  • Combinatorial Optimization
  • Traveling Salesman Problem


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