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Simplicity-expressiveness tradeoffs in mechanism design

Dütting, Paul, Fischer, Felix and Parkes, David C. (2011) Simplicity-expressiveness tradeoffs in mechanism design. In: Shoham, Yoav, Chen, Yan and Roughgarden, Tim, (eds.) Proceedings of the 13th ACM Conference on Electronic Commerce. Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, pp. 341-350. ISBN 9781450302616

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Identification Number: 10.1145/1993574.1993632


A fundamental result in mechanism design theory, the so-called revelation principle, asserts that for many questions concerning the existence of mechanisms with a given outcome one can restrict attention to truthful direct-revelation mechanisms. In practice, however, many mechanisms use a restricted message space. This motivates the study of the tradeoffs involved in choosing simplified mechanisms, which can sometimes bring benefits in precluding bad or promoting good equilibria, and other times impose costs on welfare and revenue. We study the simplicity-expressiveness tradeoff in two representative settings, sponsored search auctions and combinatorial auctions, each being a canonical example for complete information and incomplete information analysis, respectively. We observe that the amount of information available to the agents plays an important role for the tradeoff between simplicity and expressiveness.

Item Type: Book Section
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Additional Information: © 2011 Association for Computing Machinery
Divisions: Mathematics
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2017 15:57
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 05:29

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