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A Market-Based Mechanism for Allocating Space Shuttle Secondary Payload Priority

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  • John Ledyard
  • David Porter
  • Randii Wessen

Abstract

This is an investigation into the design of a market-based process to replace NASA's current committee process for allocating Shuttle secondary payload resources (lockers, Watts and crew). The market-based process allocates budgets of tokens to NASA internal organizations that in turn use the budget to bid for priority for their middeck payloads. The scheduling algorithm selects payloads by priority class and maximizes the number of tokens bid to determine a manifest. The results of a number of controlled experiments show that such a system tends to allocate resources more efficiently by guiding participants to make resource and payload tradeoffs. Most participants were able to improve their position over NASA's current ranking system. Furthermore, those that are better off make large improvements while the few that do worse have relatively small losses. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Suggested Citation

  • John Ledyard & David Porter & Randii Wessen, 2000. "A Market-Based Mechanism for Allocating Space Shuttle Secondary Payload Priority," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 2(3), pages 173-195, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:expeco:v:2:y:2000:i:3:p:173-195
    DOI: 10.1023/A:1009900310537
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1009900310537
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Smith, Vernon L, 1982. "Microeconomic Systems as an Experimental Science," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(5), pages 923-955, December.
    2. Banks, Jeffrey S. & Ledyard, John O. & Porter, David P., "undated". "Allocating Uncertain and Unresponsive Resources," Working Papers 680, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
    3. Plott, Charles R, 1994. "Market Architectures, Institutional Landscapes and Testbed Experiments," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 4(1), pages 3-10, January.
    4. Plott, Charles R., 1989. "An updated review of industrial organization: Applications of experimental methods," Handbook of Industrial Organization,in: R. Schmalensee & R. Willig (ed.), Handbook of Industrial Organization, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 19, pages 1109-1176 Elsevier.
    5. Avi Wohl, 1997. "The Feasibility of an Index-Contingent Trading Mechanism," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 43(1), pages 112-121, January.
    6. R. Preston McAfee & John McMillan, 1996. "Analyzing the Airwaves Auction," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 159-175, Winter.
    7. S.J. Rassenti & V.L. Smith & R.L. Bulfin, 1982. "A Combinatorial Auction Mechanism for Airport Time Slot Allocation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 13(2), pages 402-417, Autumn.
    8. Ledyard, John O. & Porter, David & Rangel, Antonio, "undated". "Using Computerized Exchange Systems to Solve an Allocation Problem in Project Management," Working Papers 874, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jarman, Felix & Meisner, Vincent, 2017. "Ex-post optimal knapsack procurement," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 171(C), pages 35-63.
    2. repec:eee:reensy:v:92:y:2007:i:5:p:653-659 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Paul Healy & John Ledyard & Charles Noussair & Harley Thronson & Peter Ulrich & Giulio Varsi, 2007. "Contracting inside an organization: An experimental study," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 143-167, June.
    4. Charness, Gary & Kuhn, Peter, 2011. "Lab Labor: What Can Labor Economists Learn from the Lab?," Handbook of Labor Economics, Elsevier.
    5. Andrew Reeson & Karel Nolles, 2009. "Experimental Economics: Applications to Environmental Policy," Socio-Economics and the Environment in Discussion (SEED) Working Paper Series 2009-03, CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems.
    6. Hans-Theo Normann & Roberto Ricciuti, 2009. "Laboratory Experiments For Economic Policy Making," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 23(3), pages 407-432, July.

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    Keywords

    mechanism design; auctions; scheduling;

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