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Informational limitations of ascending combinatorial auctions

Liad Blumrosen and Noam Nisan

Journal of Economic Theory, 2010, vol. 145, issue 3, 1203-1223

Abstract: We study the inherent limitations of natural widely-used classes of ascending combinatorial auctions. Specifically, we show that ascending combinatorial auctions that do not use both non-linear prices and personalized prices cannot achieve social efficiency with general bidder valuations. We also show that the loss of efficiency can be severe and that only a diminishing fraction of the social welfare may be captured. This justifies the added complexity in the auctions suggested by, e.g., Parkes and Ungar (2000) [29] and Ausubel and Milgrom (2002) [2].

Keywords: Auctions; Combinatorial; auctions; Package; auctions; Ascending; auctions; Non-linear; prices; Personalized; prices (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010
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