False-Name-Proof Mechanisms for Hiring a Team
We study the problem of hiring a team of selfish agents to perform a task. Each agent is assumed to own one or more elements of a set system, and the auctioneer is trying to purchase a feasible solution by conducting an auction. Our goal is to design auctions that are truthful and false-name-proof, meaning that it is in the agents’ best interest to reveal ownership of all elements (which may not be known to the auctioneer a priori) as well as their true incurred costs. We first propose and analyze a false-name-proof mechanism for the special cases where each agent owns only one element in reality. We prove that its frugality ratio is bounded by n2 n , which nearly matches a lower bound of Ω(2 n ) for all false-name-proof mechanisms in this scenario. We then propose a second mechanism. It requires the auctioneer to choose a reserve cost a priori, and thus does not always purchase a solution. In return, it is false-name-proof even when agents own multiple elements. We experimentally evaluate the payment (as well as social surplus) of the second mechanism through simulation.
KeywordsDominant Strategy Adjusted Cost Combinatorial Auction Multiple Element Social Surplus
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