False-Name-Proof Mechanisms for Hiring a Team

  • Atsushi Iwasaki
  • David Kempe
  • Yasumasa Saito
  • Mahyar Salek
  • Makoto Yokoo
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4858)


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.


Dominant Strategy Adjusted Cost Combinatorial Auction Multiple Element Social Surplus 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Archer, A., Tardos, E.: Frugal path mechanisms. In: Proc. 13th ACM Symp. on Discrete Algorithms, ACM/SIAM, pp. 991–999. ACM Press, New York (2002)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Garg, R., Kumar, V., Rudra, A., Verma, A.: Coalitional games on graphs: core structures, substitutes and frugality. Technical Report TR-02-60, UTCS (2002)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Talwar, K.: The price of truth: Frugality in truthful mechanisms. In: Proc. 21st Annual Symp. on Theoretical Aspects of Computer Science (2003)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Elkind, E., Sahai, A., Steiglitz, K.: Frugality in path auctions. In: Proc. 15th ACM Symp. on Discrete Algorithms, ACM/SIAM (2004)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Karlin, A., Kempe, D., Tamir, T.: Beyond VCG: Frugality of truthful mechanisms. In: Proc. 46th IEEE Symp. on Foundations of Computer Science, IEEE Computer Society Press, Los Alamitos (2005)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Nisan, N., Ronen, A.: Algorithmic mechanism design. In: Proc. 31st ACM Symp. on Theory of Computing, pp. 129–140. ACM Press, New York (1999)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Mas-Collel, A., Whinston, W., Green, J.: Microeconomic Theory. Oxford University Press, Oxford (1995)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Papadimitriou, C.: Algorithms, games and the internet. In: Proc. 33rd ACM Symp. on Theory of Computing, pp. 749–752. ACM Press, New York (2001)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Yokoo, M., Sakurai, Y., Matsubara, S.: Robust Combinatorial Auction Protocol against False-name Bids. Artificial Intelligence 130(2), 167–181 (2001)zbMATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Yokoo, M., Sakurai, Y., Matsubara, S.: The effect of false-name bids in combinatorial auctions: New fraud in Internet auctions. Games and Economic Behavior 46(1), 174–188 (2004)zbMATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Iwasaki, A., Yokoo, M., Terada, K.: A Robust Open Ascending-price Multi-unit Auction Protocol against False-name bids. Decision Support Systems 39(1), 23–39 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Suyama, T., Yokoo, M.: Strategy/false-name proof protocols for combinatorial multi-attribute procurement auction. Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems 11(1), 7–21 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Suyama, T., Yokoo, M.: Strategy/false-name proof protocols for combinatorial multi-attribute procurement auction: Handling arbitrary utility of the buyer. In: Deng, X., Ye, Y. (eds.) WINE 2005. LNCS, vol. 3828, Springer, Heidelberg (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Yokoo, M.: The characterization of strategy/false-name proof combinatorial auction protocols: Price-oriented, rationing-free protocol. In: Proceedings of the 18th International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, pp. 733–739 (2003)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Moulin, H.: Proportional scheduling, split-proofness, and merge-proofness. Games and Economic BehaviorGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Du, Y., Sami, R., Shi, Y.: Path Auction Games When an Agent Can Own Multiple Edges. In: Proc. 1st Workshop on the Economics of Networked Systems (NetEcon06), pp. 48–55 (2006)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Bikhchandani, S., de Vries, S., Schummer, J., Vohra, R.: Linear programming and vickrey auctions. IMA Volume in Mathematics and its Applications, Mathematics of the Internet: E-auction and Markets 127, 75–116 (2001)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Watts, D.J., Strogatz, S.H.: Collective dynamics of ’small-world’ networks. Nature 393(6684), 440–442 (1998)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Rochet, J.C.: A necessary and sufficient condition for rationalizability in a quasilinear context. Journal of Mathematical Economics 16, 191–200 (1987)zbMATHCrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Atsushi Iwasaki
    • 1
  • David Kempe
    • 2
  • Yasumasa Saito
    • 1
  • Mahyar Salek
    • 2
  • Makoto Yokoo
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ISEE, Kyushu University, Fukuoka 819-0395Japan
  2. 2.Department of Computer Science, University of Southern California, CA 90089-0781USA

Personalised recommendations