AAAI Publications, Thirty-First AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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Preference Elicitation For Participatory Budgeting
Gerdus Benade, Swaprava Nath, Ariel D. Procaccia, Nisarg Shah

Last modified: 2017-02-10


Participatory budgeting enables the allocation of public funds by collecting and aggregating individual preferences; it has already had a sizable real-world impact. But making the most of this new paradigm requires a rethinking of some of the basics of computational social choice, including the very way in which individuals express their preferences. We analytically compare four preference elicitation methods -- knapsack votes, rankings by value or value for money, and threshold approval votes -- through the lens of implicit utilitarian voting, and find that threshold approval votes are qualitatively superior. This conclusion is supported by experiments using data from real participatory budgeting elections.


Participatory budgeting; Implicit utilitarian voting; Distortion; Regret

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