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On the Computational Power of Iterative Auctions II: Ascending Auctions

  • Liad Blumrosen

    ()

  • Noam Nisan

    ()

We embark on a systematic analysis of the power and limitations of iterative ascending-price combinatorial auctions. We prove a large number of results showing the boundaries of what can be achieved by different types of ascending auctions: item prices vs. bundle prices, anonymous prices vs. personalized prices, deterministic vs. non-deterministic, ascending vs. descending, preference elicitation vs. full elicitation, adaptive vs. non-adaptive, and single trajectory vs. multi trajectory. Two of our main results show that neither ascending item-price auctions nor ascending anonymous bundle-price auctions can determine the optimal allocation among general valuations. This justifies the use of personalized bundle prices in iterative combinatorial auctions like the FCC spectrum auctions.

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Paper provided by The Federmann Center for the Study of Rationality, the Hebrew University, Jerusalem in its series Discussion Paper Series with number dp382.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:huj:dispap:dp382
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  1. Mishra, Debasis & Parkes, David C., 2007. "Ascending price Vickrey auctions for general valuations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 132(1), pages 335-366, January.
  2. Gul, Faruk & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1999. "Walrasian Equilibrium with Gross Substitutes," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 95-124, July.
  3. 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.
  4. Rubinstein, Ariel, 1996. "Why Are Certain Properties of Binary Relations Relatively More Common in Natural Language?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 343-55, March.
  5. 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.
  6. Liad Blumrosen & Noam Nisan, 2005. "On the Computational Power of Iterative Auctions I: Demand Queries," Discussion Paper Series dp381, The Federmann Center for the Study of Rationality, the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
  7. Ausubel Lawrence M & Milgrom Paul R, 2002. "Ascending Auctions with Package Bidding," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 1(1), pages 1-44, 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. Babaioff, Moshe & Feldman, Michal & Nisan, Noam & Winter, Eyal, 2012. "Combinatorial agency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(3), pages 999-1034.
  10. Gul, Faruk & Stacchetti, Ennio, 2000. "The English Auction with Differentiated Commodities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 92(1), pages 66-95, May.
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