Mathematical Methods of Operations Research

, Volume 56, Issue 2, pp 323–340 | Cite as

Cost allocation in shortest path games

  • Mark Voorneveld
  • Sofia Grahn


A class of cooperative games arising from shortest path problems is defined. These shortest path games are totally balanced and allow a population-monotonic allocation scheme. Possible methods for obtaining core elements are indicated; first, by relating to the allocation rules in taxation and bankruptcy problems, second, by constructing an explicit rule that takes opportunity costs into account by considering the costs of the second best alternative and that rewards players who are crucial to the construction of the shortest path. The core and the bargaining sets of Davis-Maschler and Mas-Colell are shown to coincide. Finally, noncooperative games arising from shortest path problems are introduced, in which players make bids or claims on paths. The core allocations of the cooperative shortest path game coincide with the payoff vectors in the strong Nash equilibria of the associated noncooperative shortest path game.

Key words: shortest path games, population-monotonic allocation schemes, core, strong Nash equilibrium 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Voorneveld
    • 1
  • Sofia Grahn
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics, Box 6501, 113 83 Stockholm, Sweden,, tel. +46-8-7369217, fax. +46-8-313207SE
  2. 2.Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P.O. Box 513, 75120 Uppsala, Sweden. Sofia.Grahn@nek.uu.seSE

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