Characterization and Evaluation of Multi-agent System Architectural Styles

  • Paul Davidsson
  • Stefan Johansson
  • Mikael Svahnberg
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3914)


We argue that it is useful to study classes of Multi-Agent System (mas) architectures, corresponding to architectural styles in addition to particular architectures. In this work we focus on a particular abstraction level where mas architectural styles are characterized according to properties, such as, the type of control used (from fully centralized to fully distributed), and the type of coordination used. Different architectural styles support different quality attributes to different extent. When choosing architectural style for a given application domain, we argue that it is important to evaluate the them according to the quality attributes relevant to that application. The architectural style that provides the most appropriate balance between these attributes should then be selected. As a case study we investigate the problem of dynamic and distributed resource allocation and compare six mas architectural styles that can be used to handle this task. We also illustrate the use of the Analytic Hierarchy Process, which is a basic approach to select the most suitable alternative from a number of alternatives evaluated with respect to several criteria, for selecting the architectural style that balance the trade-off between the relevant quality attributes in the best way.


Analytic Hierarchy Process Load Balance Quality Attribute Software Architecture Communication Overhead 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Davidsson
    • 1
  • Stefan Johansson
    • 1
  • Mikael Svahnberg
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Systems and Software EngineeringBlekinge Institute of Technology, Soft CenterRonnebySweden

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