AAAI Publications, Thirty-First AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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The Positronic Economist: A Computational System for Analyzing Economic Mechanisms
David Thompson, Neil Newman, Kevin Leyton-Brown

Last modified: 2017-02-10


Computational mechanism analysis is a recent approach to economic analysis in which a mechanism design setting is analyzed entirely by a computer. For games with non-trivial numbers of players and actions, the approach is only feasible when these games can be encoded compactly, e.g., as Action-Graph Games. Such encoding is currently a manual process requiring expert knowledge; our aim is to simplify and automate it. Our contribution, the Positronic Economist is a software system having two parts: (1) a Python-based language for succinctly describing mechanisms; and (2) a system that takes such descriptions as input, automatically identifies computationally useful structure, and produces a compact Action-Graph Game.


action-graph games; compact games; mechanism analysis; computational game theory

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