The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics

2018 Edition
| Editors: Macmillan Publishers Ltd


  • Robert Wilson
Reference work entry


Auctions are studied because they are market institutions of practical importance. Their simple procedural rules to resolve multilateral bargaining over the terms of trade enjoy enduring popularity. They also present simply several basic issues of price determination: the role of private information, the consequences of strategic behaviour, and the effect of many traders. These issues have influenced the subject since the initial work of Vickrey (1961), the early contribution of Griesmer et al. (1967), and the influential dissertation by Ortega- Reichert (1968). Useful introductory surveys are by Engelbrecht-Wiggans (1980), Engelbrecht- Wiggans et al. (1983), Milgrom (1985), and MacAfee and McMillan (1986); bibliographies are in MacAfee and McMillan (1986), Stark and Rothkopf (1979), and Cassady (1967) provides an historical perspective.

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Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Wilson
    • 1
  1. 1.