Quality Guarantees on k-Optimal Solutions for Distributed Constraint Optimization Problems

Jonathan P. Pearce, Milind Tambe

A distributed constraint optimization problem (DCOP) is a formalism that captures the rewards and costs of local interactions within a team of agents. Because complete algorithms to solve DCOPs are unsuitable for some dynamic or anytime domains, researchers have explored incomplete DCOP algorithms that result in locally optimal solutions. One type of categorization of such algorithms, and the solutions they produce, is k-optimality; a k-optimal solution is one that cannot be improved by any deviation by k or fewer agents. This paper presents the first known guarantees on solution quality for k-optimal solutions. The guarantees are independent of the costs and rewards in the DCOP, and once computed can be used for any DCOP of a given constraint graph structure.

Subjects: 7.1 Multi-Agent Systems; 15.2 Constraint Satisfaction

Submitted: Oct 6, 2006

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