From Goods to Traffic: First Steps Toward an Auction-Based Traffic Signal Controller

Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9086)


Traffic congestion is a major issue that plagues many urban road networks large and small. Traffic engineers are now leaning towards Intelligent Traffic Systems as many types of physical changes to road networks are costly or infeasible. Multi-Agent Systems (MAS) have become a popular paradigm for exploring intelligent solutions to traffic management problems. There are many MAS approaches to traffic management that utilise market mechanisms. In market-based approaches, drivers “pay” to use the roadways. However, a major issue with many of these solutions is that they require technology that, as yet, does not exist or is not widely available. For example, they rely on a special software agent that resides within the vehicle. This “vehicle agent” is responsible for participating in the market mechanism and communicating with the transportation infrastructure. In this paper, an auction-based traffic controller is proposed which exploits all the benefits of market mechanisms without the need for a vehicle agent. Experimental results show that such a controller is better at reducing delay and increasing throughput in a simulated city, as compared to fixed-time signal controllers.


Multi-agent systems Auctions Traffic signal control 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of LiverpoolLiverpoolUK
  2. 2.Department of Electrical Engineering and ElectronicsUniversity of LiverpoolLiverpoolUK

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