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A comparison between differential evolution (DE) and particle swarm optimization (PSO) in solving 1-D small-scale inverse scattering problems is presented. In this comparison, the efficiency of both aforementioned optimization techniques is examined for permittivity and conductivity profile reconstruction problems. The comparison is carried out under the same conditions of initial population of candidate solutions and number of iterations. Numerical results indicate that both optimization methods are reliable tools for inverse scattering applications even when noisy measurements are considered. In the particular case of small-scale problems investigated in this letter, DE outperforms the PSO in terms of reconstruction accuracy. This is considered an indicative result and not generally applicable.