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On the Computational Power of Iterative Auctions I: Demand Queries

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  • Liad Blumrosen

    ()

  • Noam Nisan

    ()

Abstract

We study the computational power and limitations of iterative combinatorial auctions. Most existing iterative combinatorial auctions are based on repeatedly suggesting prices for bundles of items, and querying the bidders for their ``demand'' under these prices. We prove several results regarding such auctions that use a polynomial number of demand queries: (1) that such auctions can simulate several other natural types of queries; (2) that such auctions can solve linear programming relaxations of winner determination problems; (3) that they can approximate the optimal allocation as well as generally possible using polynomial communication or computation, while weaker types of queries can not do so. We also initiate the study of how can the prices of bundles be represented when they are not linear, and show that the ``default'' representation has severe limitations.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The Center for the Study of Rationality, Hebrew University, Jerusalem in its series Discussion Paper Series with number dp381.

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Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:huj:dispap:dp381

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  1. Liad Blumrosen & Noam Nisan, 2005. "On the Computational Power of Iterative Auctions II: Ascending Auctions," Discussion Paper Series dp382, The Center for the Study of Rationality, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
  2. Babaioff, Moshe & Feldman, Michal & Nisan, Noam & Winter, Eyal, 2012. "Combinatorial agency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(3), pages 999-1034.
  3. Manishi Prasad & Peter Wahlqvist & Rich Shikiar & Ya-Chen Tina Shih, 2004. "A," PharmacoEconomics, Springer Healthcare | Adis, vol. 22(4), pages 225-244.
  4. Lawrence M. Ausubel & Paul Milgrom, 2002. "Ascending Auctions with Package Bidding," Working Papers 02004, Stanford University, Department of Economics.
  5. Gul, Faruk & Stacchetti, Ennio, 2000. "The English Auction with Differentiated Commodities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 66-95, May.
  6. Lehmann, Benny & Lehmann, Daniel & Nisan, Noam, 2006. "Combinatorial auctions with decreasing marginal utilities," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 270-296, May.
  7. Demange, Gabrielle & Gale, David & Sotomayor, Marilda, 1986. "Multi-Item Auctions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 863-72, August.
  8. Nisan, Noam & Segal, Ilya, 2006. "The communication requirements of efficient allocations and supporting prices," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 129(1), pages 192-224, July.
  9. Peter Cramton & Yoav Shoham & Richard Steinberg, 2004. "Combinatorial Auctions," Papers of Peter Cramton 04mit, University of Maryland, Department of Economics - Peter Cramton, revised 2004.
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Cited by:
  1. Shahar Dobzinski & Noam Nisan & Michael Schapira, 2005. "Truthful Randomized Mechanisms for Combinatorial Auctions," Discussion Paper Series dp408, The Center for the Study of Rationality, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
  2. John H. Kagel & Yuanchuan Lien & Paul Milgrom, 2010. "Ascending Prices and Package Bidding: A Theoretical and Experimental Analysis," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 160-85, August.
  3. Liad Blumrosen & Noam Nisan, 2005. "On the Computational Power of Iterative Auctions II: Ascending Auctions," Discussion Paper Series dp382, The Center for the Study of Rationality, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

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