Prof. Dr. Martin Josef Geiger

ORCID iD               Kaggle Profile

Welcome to my homepage.

M J GeigerI have some open positions that I am happy to fill with qualified candidates. Note: Incoming application must go through the Human Resources Department („Personaldezernat“) of the university.

My most-preferred communication channel is emailnot {phone, fax, mail}. If you urgently want/need to reach me, send me one (even if calling me on the phone sounds like a good idea to you, it’s not). Seriously.

Alternatively, you may approach me directly in the gym, i.e. the one below the Mensa, where I combine my passion for solving heavy problems with heavy (but still sensible, age-appropriate) lifting. Or, as the saying goes, „education is important, training hard is importanter.“ 😉 Apologies, no gym time at the moment due to some recent health issues.

General research interests

I am interested in hard (mostly: NP-hard) combinatorial optimization problems with applications in routing, scheduling, and timetabling. In this context, I am particularly focussing on (i) how to devise novel, best-in-class planning approaches and algorithms , (ii) structural properties of combinatorial search spaces, and (iii) the efficient implementation of modern heuristics in running systems (which includes the identification of efficiently solvable sub-problems and the construction of problem-specific, appropriate data structures).

Some of my research activities are devoted to optimization/implementation challenges. I have participated in all VeRoLog Vehicle Routing Competitions (among many others), winning twice, once ranking in second, and once in third place.
In case you want to take a closer look: please continue reading on the „Implementation Challenges“ section.

TSP-Challenge on

  • 1st rank (since September 2018-…) in the ongoing competition on the Traveling Salesman Problem
    The definition of the TSP is as classical as it gets: a symmetric graph in an Euclidean plane with at most 2500 nodes.
    This is an open competition with no deadline, which means that you can submit your code at any time and beat my contribution. Please make an effort in improving the state-of-the-art. Once you get close or surpass my results: please let me know. I would be most interested in learning about your work. Maybe we can collaborate at some point.

Parameterized Algorithms and Computational Experiments Challenge PACE 2021

(prices awarded in September 2021 in Lisbon, Portugal)

Optimization problem: Cluster Editing.

  • 4th place in the Heuristic Track.
    The slides of the award ceremony are available here.

VeRoLog Prize 2019VeRoLog Solver Challenge 2019

(finals held in June 2019 in Seville, Spain)

Optimization problem: distribution and subsequent installation of equipment, such as vending machines.

  • 2nd winner/place in the restricted-resources challenge.
  • 24 (out of 25) best-known-solutions in the all-time-best challenge.

Kaggle „Traveling Santa Challenge – Prime Paths“ Kaggle Silver Medal

(held from November 2018–January 2019)

Optimization problem: a very large scale Traveling Salesman Problem with an additional cost function, placing certain nodes in particular positions.

  • 32 (out of 1874), i.e. a silver medal, with +0.09% deviation from the winning solution.

PACE 2018 CertificateParameterized Algorithms and Computational Experiments Challenge PACE 2018

(prices awarded in August 2018 in Helsinki, Finland)

Optimization problem: the Steiner Tree Problem in an (undirected) graph.

  • 3rd winner/place in Track C (heuristics track).
    A report on the competition is available here.

Kaggle „Santa Gift Matching Challenge“

(held from December 2017–January 2018)

VeRoLog 2017VeRoLog Solver Challenge 2016-2017

(finals held in July 2017 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands)

Optimization problem: multi-period, multi-product pickup and delivery problem with inventory constraints (scarce equipment) and possible transfers (reuse of equipment).

  • Winner of the restricted-resources challenge.
  • 22 (out of 25) best-known-solutions in the all-time-best-challenge.

ACP Challenge 2016

(part of the 22nd International Conference on Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming, September 2016, Toulouse, France)

Optimization problem: scheduling of torpedoes in steel production.

Kaggle Silver MedalKaggle „Santa’s Stolen Sleigh“ Problem

(held from December 2015–January 2016)

Optimization problem: capacitated vehicle routing problem on a sphere with a novel objective function, large graph with 100,000 nodes.

VeRoLog 2015VeRoLog Solver Challenge 2015

(finals held in June 2015 in Vienna, Austria)

Optimization problem: coach trip with shuttle service problem.

ROADEF 2014EURO/ROADEF Challenge 2014

(finals held in July 2014 in Barcelona, Spain)

Optimization problem: operative routing and scheduling of rolling stock in train networks.

VeRoLog 2014VeRoLog Solver Challenge 2014

(finals held in June 2014 in Oslo, Norway)

Optimization problem: swap-body vehicle routing.

MISTA 2013 Challenge

(finals held in August 2013 in Gent, Belgium)

Optimization problem: multi-mode resource-constrained multi-project scheduling.

Kaggle Silver MedalKaggle „Traveling Santa“ Problem competition

(held from December 2012–January, 2013)

Optimization problem: finding two edge-disjoint minimal paths in a large graph with 150,000 nodes.

Nurse Rostering Competition

(finals held in August 2010 in Belfast, Northern Ireland)

Optimization problem: building a roster for nurses in hospitals (=a timetabling problem).

ITC 2007International Timetabling Competition ITC 2007

(finals held in August 2008 in Montréal, Canada)

Optimization problem: curriculum based course timetabling.

EASA 2002European Academic Software Award 2002

(finals held in November 2002 in Ronneby, Sweden)

EASA 1998European Academic Software Award 1998

(finals held in September 1998 in Oxford (Keble College), UK)

This part is no longer maintained. Instead, the interested reader is referred to:

  1. Our own list of publications (which should be pretty much complete):
  2. The dblp computer science bibliography:
  3. Google Scholar:

After being born November 1973 in Ellwangen an der Jagst, I grew up in Aalen, Germany, where I also earned my „Abitur“ (A-levels) at the Schubart-Gymnasium.
I am, since 1996, married to TLOML Monika Geiger, née Pilinszki.


My formal qualifications are based on my studies in „Wirtschaftswissenschaften“ (Economics and Business Administration) at the Universität Hohenheim at Stuttgart, Germany, which I completed 1999 with a Diploma ranking 4th of all graduating students (=top 3%). I am also „Doktor der Wirtschaftswissenschaften ( Dr. oec.)“ (summa cum laude) (Universität Hohenheim; submitted 2004, awarded 2005), and hold the academic degree of Master of Philosophy in Computer Science from the University of Nottingham, UK. Also at the Universität Hohenheim, I successfully completed a postdoctoral „Habilitation“, earning the „Venia Legendi“ in „Betriebswirtschaftslehre“ (Business Administration; submitted 07/2008, awarded 2009).

Industry and academic positions held

Prior to joining the faculty of the Helmut-Schmidt-University/ University of the Federal Armed Forces Hamburg in July 2009, I held a position as a tenured Associate Professor in Operations and Supply Chain Management at the University of Southern Denmark, Odense campus, Denmark (2008–2009). Before, I was an „Akademischer Rat“ (translates to something like an untenured Assistant Professor) at the „Lehrstuhl für Industriebetriebslehre“ (Production and Logistics Management Department) of the Universität Hohenheim at Stuttgart, Germany (2005–2008).

From 2003 to 2005, I was member of the Automated Scheduling, Optimisation and Planning Research Group at the University of Nottingham, UK, conducting research on a project involving an industrial partner from the printing industry. 2001 to 2002: research and teaching assistant, „Lehrstuhl für Industriebetriebslehre“ (Production and Logistics Management Department), Universität Hohenheim at Stuttgart, Germany.

I gained some industry experience during my times as a business consultant at „Bauder Management Partner“ (now called averi) in Stuttgart, Germany (1999–2000).

In 2008, I ranked first for a W3 (full) professor position at the Mercator School of Management of the Universität Duisburg-Essen, Germany, an offer I declined (instead, I moved to Odense, Denmark, see above).

Contributions to the scientific community

Over the years, I have made some contributions to the scientific community (apart from publishing papers, presenting my work at conferences, serving on scientific committees of conferences and workshops, and reviewing many manuscripts).

  • From 2005 to 2011, I was editor of the newsletter of the International Society on Multiple Criteria Decision Making.
  • In 2007, Prof.  Dr. Walter Habenicht an I organized the meeting of the EURO EU/ME-Working Group, the working group on metaheuristics.
  • In 2011, I did organize and host the workshop of the GOR Working Group „Entscheidungstheorie und -praxis“.
  • In 2013, I had the honor of organizing the MCDA/M Summer School.
  • Later in 2013, Prof.  Dr. Andreas Fink and I organized the meeting of the EURO EU/ME-Working Group, the working group on metaheuristics.
  • Also in 2013, we did organize and host the workshop of the GOR Working Group „Entscheidungstheorie und -praxis“ in Hamburg, again, this time together with the Decision Analysis Special Interest Group DASIG of the British OR Society.
  • In 2015, it was our pleasure organizing the 23rd International Conference on Multiple Criteria Decision Making, MCDM 2015 (the „MCDM“ is a not-so-small conference; we had 361 participants from 49 countries).
  • In 2016, and together with my fellow colleagues at HSU, we organized and hosted the annual conference of the German Operations Research Society GOR, the OR 2016 (the „OR“ is a bigger conference; we had around 700 participants from about 40 countries).
  • From 2005–2011 and 2013–2017: In my capacity as the editor of the newsletter of the Internal Society on Multiple Criteria Decision Making, and as organizer of the MCDM 2015 conference, I served on the Executive Committee of the MCDM Society.
  • Since 2013, I serve as coordinator of the Working Group „Entscheidungstheorie und -praxis“ within GOR e.V., the German Operations Research Society.
  • From JAN 2021 to JAN 2023, I did serve my university as Dean of Students for the B.Sc./M.Sc. Business Administration-study program.

Selected Scientific Awards, Honors, and similar stuff

  • Finalist of the European Academic Software Award 98 (EASA 98) in Oxford, UK, with the computer program developed for my Diploma Thesis.
  • Winner of the Rudi Häussler Award 2001, an award for promising young researchers (2045 €).
  • Laureate of the German Operations Research Society GOR at the EURO Summer Institute on Decision Analysis and Artificial Intelligence in Toulouse, France, 2001.
  • Winner of the European Academic Software Award 2002 (EASA 2002) in Ronneby, Sweden, with the computer program developed for my Doctoral Dissertation.
  • Winner of the EURO-fellowship for ELAVIO 2005, July 25–29, 2005, Villa de Leyva, Colombia (1122 €).
  • Winner of the Südwestmetall Prize 2005 for my Doctoral Dissertation (5000 €).
  • MCDM Conference Chairmanship Award 2015.

Some of my research activities have been financially supported by organizations outside my university. To mention are in particular:


Letzte Änderung: 1. Dezember 2023