Constraint Satisfaction: The Modeling Challenge

Eugene C. Freuder
Constraint Computation Center
Department of Computer Science
University of New Hampshire


Constraint programming provides powerful tools for solving declarative formulae ons of complex combinatorial problems.

Constraint programming is an emerging field with contributions from:

Application domains include:

The talk will provide a brief introduction to this field, and to the work of the UNH Constraint Computation Center. It will focus on one of the field's key rese arch challenges: understanding and automating the modeling process. Constraint p roblems are modeled as consisting of variables, values and constraints; a soluti on assigns a value to each variable subject to restrictions that the constraints impose on which combinations of values are permitted. For example, the problem might be to assign professors (values) to courses (variables), subject to the co nstraints that courses that meet at the same time cannot be taught by the same p rofessor. Automated modeling encompasses moving from a problem stated in a form natural for the user to a representation suitable for efficient processing by co nstraint solving methods.

Biographical Information

Professor Freuder received his B.A. from Harvard and his Ph.D. from M.I.T. He is a Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence, the founding Editor-in-Chief of the Constraints journal, and the Executive Chair of the Organ izing Committee of the International Conference on Principles and Practice of Co nstraint Programming. He is the Director of the UNH Constraint Computation Cente r (
Eyal Amir
Last modified: Wed Mar 3 16:54:13 PST 1999