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Truthful Randomized Mechanisms for Combinatorial Auctions

Shahar Dobzinski (), Noam Nisan and Michael Schapira ()

Discussion Paper Series from The Federmann Center for the Study of Rationality, the Hebrew University, Jerusalem

Abstract: We design two computationally-efficient incentive-compatible mechanisms for combinatorial auctions with general bidder preferences. Both mechanisms are randomized, and are incentive-compatible in the universal sense. This is in contrast to recent previous work that only addresses the weaker notion of incentive compatibility in expectation. The first mechanism obtains an $O(\sqrt{m})$-approximation of the optimal social welfare for arbitrary bidder valuations -- this is the best approximation possible in polynomial time. The second one obtains an $O(\log^2 m)$-approximation for a subclass of bidder valuations that includes all submodular bidders. This improves over the best previously obtained incentive-compatible mechanism for this class which only provides an $O(\sqrt m)$-approximation.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gth
Date: 2005-11
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