Dr Alma Rahat

Dr Alma Rahat

Associate Professor, Computer Science
Office - 112
First Floor
Computational Foundry
Bay Campus
Available For Postgraduate Supervision


Dr Rahat is an Associate Professor of Data Science. His expertise is in evolutionary and Bayesian search and optimisation. Particularly, he has worked on developing effective acquisition functions for optimising single and multi-objective problems and locating the feasible space of solutions. He has a strong track record of working with industry on a broad range of optimisation problems, which resulted in numerous articles in top journals and conferences, including a best paper in the Real-World Applications track at GECCO, and a patent with Hydro International Ltd. Recently, he has been actively contributing to the Welsh Government's response to the pandemic using his expertise in machine learning and parameter optimisation with funding from both the Welsh Government (Co-PI and Co-I; £750k) and EPSRC (EP/W01226X/1, PI; £230k). His work, with colleagues at Swansea, has resulted in generating the medium term projections of admissions and deaths on a weekly basis for the First Minister of Wales, and the UK Health Security Agency.

He is one of 24 members of the IEEE Computational Intelligence Society Task Force on Data-Driven Evolutionary Optimization of Expensive Problems. He has been the lead organiser for the Surrogate-Assisted Evolutionary Optimisation (SAEOpt) workshop at GECCO since 2016, and was the Proceedings Chair for GECCO 2022.

Currently, he is interested in developing methods for optimising constrained and expensive single and multi-objective problems, and active learning, that may be applied in different contexts, e.g. engineering design, educational technology, computational modelling, decision-making, and policy exploration.

Dr Rahat has a BEng (Hons.) in Electronic Engineering from the University of Southampton, UK, and a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Exeter, UK. He completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Teaching in Higher Education at Swansea University, and he is now a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA). He worked as a product development engineer after his bachelor's degree, and held post-doctoral research positions at the University of Exeter. Before moving to Swansea, he was a Lecturer in Computer Science at the University of Plymouth, UK.

Areas Of Expertise

  • Bayesian Search and Optimisation
  • Evolutionary Algorithms
  • Multi-objective Optimisation
  • Surrogate-Assisted Optimisation
  • Nature Inspired Computation
  • Active Learning
  • Machine Learning