Call for Papers

Special Session on Transfer Learning in Evolutionary Computation

2018 IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation (WCCI2018/CEC2018)

Windsor Convention Centre, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 8-13 July, 2018

Data mining, machine learning, and optimisation algorithms have achieved promises in many real-world tasks, such as classification, clustering and regression. These algorithms can often generalise well on data in the same domain, i.e. drawn from the same feature space and with the same distribution. However, in many real-world applications, the available data are often from different domains. For example, we may need to perform classification in one target domain, but only have sufficient training data in another (source) domain, which may be in a different feature space or follow a different data distribution. Transfer learning aims to transfer knowledge acquired in one problem domain, i.e. the source domain, onto another domain, i.e. the target domain. Transfer learning has recently emerged as a new learning framework and hot topic in data mining and machine learning.

Aim and Scope:

Evolutionary computation techniques have been successfully applied to many real-world problems, and started to be used to solve transfer learning tasks. Meanwhile, transfer learning has attracted increasing attention from many disciplines, and has been used in evolutionary computation to address complex and challenging issues. The theme of this special session is transfer learning in evolutionary computation, covering ALL different evolutionary computation paradigms, including Genetic algorithms (GAs), Genetic programming (GP), Evolutionary programming (EP), Evolution strategies (ES), Learning classifier systems (LCS), Particle swarm optimization (PSO), Ant colony optimization (ACO), Differential evolution (DE), Evolutionary Multi-objective optimization (EMO) and Memetic computing (MC).

The aim is to investigate in both the new theories and methods on how transfer learning can be achieved with different evolutionary computation paradigms, and how transfer learning can be adopted in evolutionary computation, and the applications of evolutionary computation and transfer learning in real-world problems.

Authors are invited to submit their original and unpublished work to this special session. Topics of interest include but are not limited to:


Important dates:


Paper Submission:

Please follow the IEEE WCCI/CEC2018 Submission Web Site. Special session papers are treated the same as regular conference papers. Please specify that your paper is submitted to SS08 Transfer Learning in Evolutionary Computation. All papers accepted and presented at WCCI/CEC2018 will be included in the conference proceedings published by IEEE Explore, which are typically indexed by EI.



Bing Xue
School of Engineering and Computer Science, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600, Wellington, New Zealand.
Phone: +64-4-463 5542; Fax: +64-4-463 5045.

Liang Feng
College of Computer Science, Chongqing University, China.
Phone: +86-23-65102502

Yew-Soon Ong
School of Computer Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
Phone: +65-6790-5778, Fax: +65-6792-6559

Mengjie Zhang
School of Engineering and Computer Science, Victoria University of Wellington, PO Box 600, Wellington, New Zealand.
Phone: +64-4-463 5654; Fax: +64-4-463 5045

Biography of the Organizers

Bing Xue is currently a Senior Lecturer in School of Engineering and Computer Science at Victoria University of Wellington. Her research focuses mainly on evolutionary computation, feature selection, feature construction, multi-objective optimisation, data mining and machine learning. She is currently the Chair of the IEEE CIS Task Force on Evolutionary Feature Selection and Construction, and an Associate Editor/member of Editorial Board for five international journals including IEEE Computational Intelligence Magazine, Applied Soft Computing, International Journal of Swarm Intelligence, and International Journal of Computer Information Systems and Industrial Management Applications. She is a Guest Editor for the Special Issue on Evolutionary Feature Reduction and Machine Learning for the Springer Journal of Soft Computing. She is also a Guest Editor for Evolutionary Image Analysis and Pattern Recognition in Journal of Applied Soft Computing. She has been a chair for a number of international conferences including the Leading Chair of IEEE Symposium on Computational Intelligence in Feature Analysis, Selection, and Learning in Image and Pattern Recognition at SSCI 2016 and 2017, a Program Co-Chair of the 31th Australasian AI 2018, ACALCI 2018, and the 7th International Conference on SoCPaR2015, Special Session Chair for The 20th Asia-Pacific Symposium on Intelligent and Evolutionary Systems (IES2016), a Tutorial Chair for the 30th Australasian AI, and publicity chair for the international conference on Simulated Evolution And Learning (SEAL) 2017. She is the organiser of the special session on Evolutionary Feature Selection and Construction in IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation (CEC) 2015, 2016 and 2017, and SEAL 2014 and 2017. Dr Xue is chairing the IEEE CIS Graduate Student Research Grants Committee and the Secretary of the IEEE Chapter on Computational Intelligence in that Section.

Liang Feng received the PhD degree from the School of Computer Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, in 2014. He was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Computational Intelligence Graduate Lab, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He is currently an Assistant Professor at the College of Computer Science, Chongqing University, China. His research interests include Computational and Artificial Intelligence, Memetic Computing, Big Data Optimization and Learning, as well as Transfer Learning.

Yew-Soon Ong received the Ph.D. degree on artificial intelligence in complex design from the Computational Engineering and Design Center, University of Southampton, Southampton, U.K., in 2003. He is Professor and Chair of the School of Computer Science and Engineering, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He is Director of the Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Research Center, Director of the A*Star SIMTECH-NTU Joint Lab on Complex Systems and Principal Investigator of the Data Analytics & Complex System Programme in the Rolls-Royce@NTU Corporate Lab. Dr. Ong is founding Editor-In-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Emerging Topics in Computational Intelligence, Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation, IEEE Transactions on Neural Network & Learning Systems, IEEE Transactions on Cybernetics, and others. His research interests in computational intelligence span across memetic computation, complex design optimization, intelligent agents and Big Data Analytics. He received the 2015 IEEE Computational Intelligence Magazine Outstanding Paper Award and the 2012 IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation Outstanding Paper Award for his work pertaining to Memetic Computation.

Dr Mengjie Zhang is currently Professor of Computer Science at Victoria University of Wellington, where he heads the interdisciplinary Evolutionary Computation Research Group. He is a member of the University Academic Board, a member of the University Postgraduate Scholarships Committee, a member of the Faculty of Graduate Research Board at the University, Associate Dean (Research and Innovation) in the Faculty of Engineering, and Chair of the Research Committee of the Faculty of Engineering and School of Engineering and Computer Science. His research is mainly focused on evolutionary computation, particularly genetic programming, particle swarm optimisation and learning classifier systems with application areas of feature selection/construction and dimensionality reduction, computer vision and image processing, job shop scheduling, multi-objective optimisation, and classification with unbalanced and missing data. He is also interested in data mining, machine learning, and web information extraction. Prof Zhang has published over 400 research papers in refereed international journals and conferences in these areas. He has been serving as an associated editor or editorial board member for seven international journals including IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation, the Evolutionary Computation Journal (MIT Press), Genetic Programming and Evolvable Machines (Springer), Applied Soft Computing, IEEE Transactions on Emergent Topics in Computational Intelligence, Natural Computing, and Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence, and as a reviewer of over 30 international journals. He has been involving major EC conferences such as GECCO, IEEE CEC, EvoStar, IEEE SSCI and SEAL as a Chair. He has also been serving as a steering committee member and a program committee member for over 100 international conferences including all major conferences in evolutionary computation. Since 2007, he has been listed as one of the top ten world genetic programming researchers by the GP bibliography (

Prof Zhang is the current Chair of IEEE CIS Intelligent Systems Applications, the immediate Past Chair of the IEEE CIS Emergent Technologies Technical Committee and the IEEE CIS Evolutionary Computation Technical Committee, a vice-chair of the IEEE CIS Task Force on Evolutionary Feature Selection and Construction, a vice-chair of the IEEE CIS Task Force on Evolutionary Computer Vision and Image Processing, and the founding chair of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Chapter in New Zealand.


Program Committee (TBA)