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The Second-Price Auction Solves King Solomon'S Dilemma

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  • H. REIJU MIHARA

Abstract

Consider the problem of allocating k identical, indivisible objects among n agents, where k is less than n. The planner's objective is to give the objects to the top k valuation agents at zero costs to the planner and the agents. Each agent knows her own valuation of the object and whether it is among the top k. Modify the (k+1)st-price sealed-bid auction by introducing a small participation fee and the option not to participate in it. This strikingly simple mechanism (modified auction) implements the desired outcome in iteratively weakly undominated strategies. Moreover, no pair of agents can profitably deviate from the equilibrium by coordinating their strategies or bribing each other.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Japanese Economic Association in its journal Japanese Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 63 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 (09)
Pages: 420-429

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jecrev:v:63:y:2012:i:3:p:420-429

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  1. Olszewski, Wojciech, 2003. "A simple and general solution to King Solomon's problem," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 315-318, February.
  2. Parimal Kanti Bag; Hamid Sabourian, 2004. "Distributing Awards Efficiently: More on King Solomon's Problem," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 257, Econometric Society.
  3. Perry, M. & Reny, P.J., 1995. "A general solution to king Solomon's dilemma," Discussion Paper 1995-81, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
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