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Decentralized utilitarian mechanisms for scheduling games

Cole, Richard, Correa, Jose, Gkatzelis, Vasillis, Mirrokni, Vahab and Olver, Neil ORCID: 0000-0001-8897-5459 (2015) Decentralized utilitarian mechanisms for scheduling games. Games and Economic Behavior, 92. 306 - 326. ISSN 0899-8256

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.geb.2013.03.011


Game Theory and Mechanism Design are by now standard tools for studying and designing massive decentralized systems. Unfortunately, designing mechanisms that induce socially efficient outcomes often requires full information and prohibitively large computational resources. In this work we study simple mechanisms that require only local information. Specifically, in the setting of a classic scheduling problem, we demonstrate local mechanisms that induce outcomes with social cost close to that of the socially optimal solution. Somewhat counter-intuitively, we find that mechanisms yielding Pareto dominated outcomes may in fact enhance the overall performance of the system, and we provide a justification of these results by interpreting these inefficiencies as externalities being internalized. We also show how to employ randomization to obtain yet further improvements. Lastly, we use the game-theoretic insights gained to obtain a new combinatorial approximation algorithm for the underlying optimization problem.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 Elsevier Inc.
Divisions: Mathematics
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics
JEL classification: C - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods > C7 - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory > C72 - Noncooperative Games
D - Microeconomics > D7 - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making > D71 - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
D - Microeconomics > D8 - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty > D82 - Asymmetric and Private Information
Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2020 09:51
Last Modified: 12 Jul 2024 01:03

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