Protecting the NECTAR of the Ganga River Through Game-Theoretic Factory Inspections

  • Benjamin Ford
  • Matthew Brown
  • Amulya Yadav
  • Amandeep Singh
  • Arunesh Sinha
  • Biplav Srivastava
  • Christopher Kiekintveld
  • Milind Tambe
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9662)


Leather is an integral part of the world economy and a substantial income source for developing countries. Despite government regulations on leather tannery waste emissions, inspection agencies lack adequate enforcement resources, and tanneries’ toxic wastewaters wreak havoc on surrounding ecosystems and communities. Previous works in this domain stop short of generating executable solutions for inspection agencies. We introduce NECTAR - the first security game application to generate environmental compliance inspection schedules. NECTAR’s game model addresses many important real-world constraints: a lack of defender resources is alleviated via a secondary inspection type; imperfect inspections are modeled via a heterogeneous failure rate; and uncertainty, in traveling through a road network and in conducting inspections, is addressed via a Markov Decision Process. To evaluate our model, we conduct a series of simulations and analyze their policy implications.


Game theory Inspection Security games Human-robot/agent interaction Multiagent systems 



This research was supported by MURI Grant W911NF-11-1-0332.


  1. 1.
    Alpern, S., Morton, A., Papadaki, K.: Patrolling games. Operations Research 59(5), 1246–1257 (2011)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Avenhaus, R., von Stengel, B., Zamir, S.: Inspection games. In: Handbook of Game Theory with Economic Applications, vol. 3, chap. 51, pp. 1947–1987 (2002)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Basilico, N., Gatti, N., Amigoni, F.: Patrolling security games: definition and algorithms for solving large instances with single patroller and single intruder. Artif. Intell. J. 184, 78–123 (2012)CrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bosansky, B., Jiang, A., Tambe, M., Kiekintveld, C.: Combining compact representation and incremental generation in large games with sequential strategies. In: AAAI (2015)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Bošanskỳ, B., Lisỳ, V., Jakob, M., Pěchouček, M.: Computing time-dependent policies for patrolling games with mobile targets. In: AAMAS. pp. 989–996 (2011)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Brown, M., Saisubramanian, S., Varakantham, P.R., Tambe, M.: Streets: game-theoretic traffic patrolling with exploration and exploitation. In: IAAI (2014)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Dong, X., Li, C., Li, J., Wang, J., Huang, W.: A game-theoretic analysis of implementation of cleaner production policies in the chinese electroplating industry. Resour. Conserv. Recycl. 54(12), 1442–1448 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Filar, J., et al.: Player aggregation in the traveling inspector model. IEEE Trans. Autom. Control 30(8), 723–729 (1985)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gupta, S., Gupta, R., Tamra, R.: Challenges faced by leather industry in kanpur (2007).
  10. 10.
    India, P.C.o.: Evaluation study on the function of state pollution control boards (2013)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Institute, B.: Top ten toxic pollution problems: Tannery operations. Report (2011).
  12. 12.
    Jain, M., Conitzer, V., Tambe, M.: Security scheduling for real-world networks. In: AAMAS (2013)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Jainani, D.: Kanpur leather industry in danger as ngt cracks whip on pollution. In: Financial Express (2015)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Mwinyihija, M.: Emerging world leather trends and continental shifts on leather and leathergoods production. In: World Leather Congress Proceedings (2011)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Shieh, E., Jiang, A.X., Yadav, A., Varakantham, P., Tambe, M.: Unleashing Dec-MDPs in security games: enabling effective defender teamwork. In: ECAI (2014)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    von Stengel, B.: Recursive inspection games. arXiv preprint (2014). arXiv:1412.0129
  17. 17.
    Tambe, M.: Security and Game Theory: Algorithms, Deployed Systems. Lessons Learned. Cambridge University Press, New York (2011)CrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Tapiero, C.S.: Environmental quality control and environmental games. Environ. Model. Assess. 9(4), 201–206 (2005)MathSciNetCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Yin, Z., Jiang, A., Johnson, M., Tambe, M., Kiekintveld, C., Leyton-Brown, K., Sandholm, T., Sullivan, J.: Trusts: scheduling randomized patrols for fare inspection in transit systems. In: IAAI (2012)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benjamin Ford
    • 1
  • Matthew Brown
    • 1
  • Amulya Yadav
    • 1
  • Amandeep Singh
    • 2
  • Arunesh Sinha
    • 1
  • Biplav Srivastava
    • 3
  • Christopher Kiekintveld
    • 4
  • Milind Tambe
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Columbia UniversityNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.IBM ResearchNew DelhiIndia
  4. 4.University of Texas at El PasoEl PasoUSA

Personalised recommendations