Computational Intelligence

We are interested in learning and optimization questions related to systems within the Natural Sciences. Our group is especially interested in Machine/Statistical Learning and Global Optimization aspects of experimental domains, that is, practical physical-, life- and agro-sciences search-problems whose simulated models are unavailable and thus require real-world experimentation.

Prof. Ofer Shir


We are primarily interested in Operational Research and Machine Learning aspects of experimental domains, that is, algorithmic design for practical physical- and life-sciences problems whose computerized models are unavailable or too expensive to be executed, and thus require real-world measurements when applying search/learning.

We foresee Computational Intelligence algorithms as facilitators that will assist experimental scientists in achieving optimal behavior of their systems and in identifying targeted phenomena. Our long-term research plan is to establish algorithmically-guided discovery tools for bio-systems. A primary pathway, adhering to this plan, is actively to devise specific algorithms for experimental optimization and learning of specific bio-systems.

Enlisted below are ongoing research projects at the Shir group:

  • Experimental combinatorial optimization of protein expression systems (with Dr. Noy/Migal)
  • Precision agriculture: geo-statistical learning (with Prof. Litaor/Migal)
  • Benchmarking randomized search heuristics (with Dr. Doerr/Sorbonne and Prof. Bäck/Leiden-U)
  • Effective Detection of Foliage Diseases in Vineyards (with Dr. Sharon/Migal)
  • Deep Learning of a Complementary Ensemble of Sporadic Input Maps (with Prof. Linker/Technion-IIT and Dr. Chen/Migal)

Principal Researcher

Prof. Ofer Shir

Prof. Ofer Shir
Computational Intelligence

The advent of modern laboratory and field experiments, as well as of computerized systems, enables researchers to control experiments and analyze their big-data in high-speed rates.


Assaf Israeli

B.Sc. 2010, Tel-Hai College. Israel
Research assistant and M.Sc. candidate

Naama Horesh

Research assistant
B.Sc. 2017, Ben-Gurion University, Israel



Latest Publications

Improving Model Accuracy for Imbalanced Image Classification Tasks by Adding a Final Batch Normalization Layer: An Empirical Study

Kocaman, V., Shir, O.M., Bäck, T.
Proceedings of the 25th International Conference on Pattern Recognition, ICPR2020 (2021) 10404–10411

On the Covariance-Hessian Relation in Evolution Strategies.

Shir, O.M., Yehudayoff, A.
Theoretical Computer Science 801 (2020) 157—174

Benchmarking Discrete Optimization Heuristics with IOHprofiler.

Doerr, C., Ye, F., Horesh, N., Wang, H., Shir, O.M., Bäck, T.
Applied Soft Computing 88 (2020) 106027

Predict or Screen Your Expensive Assay? DoE vs. Surrogates in Experimental Combinatorial Optimization.

Horesh, N., Bäck, T., Shir, O.M.
In Proceedings of the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference, GECCO-2019 ,2019, Ed. ,ACM Press New York, NY, USA, Pages 274?284

Contact Information

Research Group Leader
Prof. Ofer Shir

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