AAAI Publications, Workshops at the Twenty-Ninth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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A New Perspective of Trust Through Multi-Attribute Auctions
Ferran Torrent-Fontbona, Albert Pla, Beatriz López

Last modified: 2015-04-01


Auction mechanisms are very well known methods to allocate tasks when several agents are involved. Particularly, multi-attribute auctions are a special mechanism that allows the consideration of task attributes other than prices, such as delivery time or energy consumptions. Incentive compatible mechanisms encourage agents to reveal the attributes which agents estimate truthful, however, these mechanisms by themselves cannot know if such estimations are reliable or not due to uncertainty. Under such circumstances, trust could complement incentive compatibility reducing the risk of losses by the auctioneer. The use of trust in auctions is a well-studied problem; however, most of the works in the literature focus on how to model trust rather on how trust is used in the mechanism. Thus, this paper proposes an easy and systematic way to include a multi-faceted model of trust into multi-attribute auctions. Conversely to other previous works where trust is only used in the winner determination problem, the presented approach uses trust both in deciding the winner of the auction and in the payment to the corresponding bidder. According to the results obtained from the experimentation, the use of trust following the methodology presented in this paper highly reduces the number of winner bids from unreliable bidders and, therefore, the number of tasks executed in worse conditions than the agreed. Complementary, this paper proposes a new trust adaptation method which consists of increasing or decreasing the trust value (depending on whether the task is executed properly or not) according to a simple mathematical function with asymptotes on 0 and 1. This model does not present the rigidity problem present in other models of the literature when it comes to agents that have inconstant performances.


trust;multi-attribute;auctions;resource allocation;multi-agent

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