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Simplified Mechanisms with an Application to Sponsored-Search Auctions

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  • Paul Milgrom

    ()
    (Stanford University)

Abstract

A mechanism can be simplified by restricting its message space. If the restricted message space satisfies a certain “outcome closure property,” then the simplification is “tight”: for every S=0 any Nash equilibrium of the simplified mechanism is also an Nash equilibrium of the unrestricted mechanism. Prominent auction and matching mechanisms are tight simplifications of mechanisms studied in economic theory and often incorporate price-adjustment features that facilitate simplification. The generalized second price auction used for sponsored-search advertising is a tight simplification of a series of second-price auctions that eliminates the lowest revenue equilibrium outcomes and leaves intact only higher revenue equilibria.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research in its series Discussion Papers with number 08-013.

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Date of creation: Dec 2008
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Handle: RePEc:sip:dpaper:08-013

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Keywords: sponsored search; generalized second-price auctions; mechanism design;

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References

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  1. Benjamin Edelman & Michael Ostrovsky & Michael Schwarz, 2005. "Internet Advertising and the Generalized Second Price Auction: Selling Billions of Dollars Worth of Keywords," NBER Working Papers 11765, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Roberts, Donald John & Postlewaite, Andrew, 1976. "The Incentives for Price-Taking Behavior in Large Exchange Economies," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(1), pages 115-27, January.
  3. Edward Clarke, 1971. "Multipart pricing of public goods," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 17-33, September.
  4. William Vickrey, 1961. "Counterspeculation, Auctions, And Competitive Sealed Tenders," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 16(1), pages 8-37, 03.
  5. Leo K. Simon and William R. Zame., 1987. "Discontinuous Games and Endogenous Sharing Rules," Economics Working Papers 8756, University of California at Berkeley.
  6. Alvin E. Roth & Elliott Peranson, 1999. "The Redesign of the Matching Market for American Physicians: Some Engineering Aspects of Economic Design," NBER Working Papers 6963, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. John William Hatfield & Paul R. Milgrom, 2005. "Matching with Contracts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 913-935, September.
  8. Bernheim, B Douglas & Whinston, Michael D, 1986. "Menu Auctions, Resource Allocation, and Economic Influence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 101(1), pages 1-31, February.
  9. Tjalling C. Koopmans & Martin J. Beckmann, 1955. "Assignment Problems and the Location of Economic Activities," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 4, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  10. Paul Milgrom, 2008. "Assignment Messages and Exchanges," Discussion Papers 08-014, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  11. Kelso, Alexander S, Jr & Crawford, Vincent P, 1982. "Job Matching, Coalition Formation, and Gross Substitutes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1483-1504, November.
  12. Groves, Theodore, 1973. "Incentives in Teams," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(4), pages 617-31, July.
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Cited by:
  1. White, Alexander, 2013. "Search engines: Left side quality versus right side profits," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 690-701.
  2. Hideo Konishi & Chiu Yu Ko, 2009. "Profit-Maximizing Matchmaker," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 721, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 23 Apr 2012.
  3. Blumrosen, Liad & Feldman, Michal, 2013. "Mechanism design with a restricted action space," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 424-443.
  4. Perez-Richet, Eduardo, 2011. "A note on the tight simplification of mechanisms," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 110(1), pages 15-17, January.
  5. Matias Nunez & Jean-Francois Laslier, 2013. "Preference Intensity Representation : Strategic Overstating in Large Elections," Post-Print hal-00917099, HAL.
  6. Kos, Nenad, 2012. "Communication and efficiency in auctions," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 233-249.

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